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QfnrncU  Ulnroeraitg  Siibratg 

Stifuca,  ^em  fork 






Cornell  University  Library 
PS  2081.A42  1918 

Letters  o«  Henry  Brevoort  to  Vj[MhM^ 

3   1924  022  056  786 

Cornell  University 

The  original  of  tliis  book  is  in 
tlie  Cornell  University  Library. 

There  are  no  known  copyright  restrictions  in 
the  United  States  on  the  use  of  the  text. 






Tl>C,B-r     -R  Wl  LH  OTT.r     UNP      1  ISHEJ 

Jean  Kenwick 

Prom  the  painting  by  John  Wesley  Jarvis 

(Mrs.  Renwick,  the  cherished  friend  of  both  Irving  and  Brevoort, 
was,  in  her  girlhood,  as  Jean  Jeffrey,  celebrated  in  poems  by 
Robert  Bums.  This  portrait  is  reproduced  by  the  courtesy  of 
her  great-granddaaflMter,  Mrs.  R<»beIt'r^ag»ictei>^■ .  SY 












Zbe  iRnicRetbocKet  pteas 


Copyright,  191& 



First  published  ia  1916,  in  two  volumes,  in  a  Limited  Edition 
of  310  sets.  Now  issued  in  a  Library  Edition,  the  two  volumes 
in  one. 

Autumo,  1918. 

Ube  finfcfietliocliet  press,  Dew  Hatlt 


In  1915,  G.  P.  Putnam's  Sons  brought  into 
publication,  in  a  specially  printed  edition,  the 
letters  written  by  Washington  Irving  to  his 
friend  Henry  Brevoort.  The  editorial  re- 
sponsibility for  the  two  volumes  rested  with 
Mr.  George  S.  Hellman.  The  public  showed 
a  favorable  and  immediate  interest  in  the 
volumes  and  the  edition  was  exhausted  within 
a  few  days  of  its  publication.  Encouraged  by 
the  interest  expressed  in  this  series  of  letters, 
the  publishers  are  glad  to  be  able  to  present, 
under  the  same  editorial  supervision,  the  other 
side  of  this  distinctive  correspondence,  the 
letters  of  Henry  Brevoort  to  Washington 
Irving.  The  Editor,  Mr.  Hellman,  was  for- 
tunate enough  to  come  into  relations  at  the 
Groher  Club  with  Mr.  Grenville  Kane,  who 


spoke  with  interest  and  with  approval  of  the 
volumes  of  the  Irving-Brevoort  Letters.  Mr. 
Kane  advised  Mr.  Hellman  that  he  had  in  his 
possession  the  letters  of  his  grandfather,  Mr. 
Henry  Brevoort,  and,  with  the  characteristic 
liberality  of  a  student  of  history  and  of  a 
lover  of  books,  he  offered  to  place  this  series 
of  letters  at  the.  disposal  of  Mr.  Hellman  for 
publication  as  a  companion  work.  Mr.  Hell- 
man realized  how  important  the  publication 
of  these  letters  would  be  in  completing  the 
record  of  this  historic  friendship. 

Of  the  series  of  Irving  Letters,  a  portion — 
although  only  a  small  portion — came  into 
publication  in  Pierre  M.  Irving's  Life  and 
Letters  of  his  Uncle,  but  the  letters  of  Bre- 
ivoort  are  practically  unknown  to  the  public. 
In  the  four  volumes  of  the  Irving  Biography, 
Pierre  Irving  had  been  able  to  make  place  for 
but  three  pages  of  the  Brevoort  material. 
This  series  of  letters  presents  a  distinctive  and 
original  record   of   the   social,   literary,    and 


dramatic  events  in  New  York  and  ,in  the 
literary  circles  of  the  Republic  during  the  first 
half  of  the  nineteenth  century.  A  few  letters 
belonging  to  the  years  1808,  1809  and  1810 
are  missing,  but  the  series  is  substantially 

The  pubUshers  desire  to  express  their  obliga- 
tions to  Mr.  Grenville  Kane  for  his  gracious 
action  in  permitting  them  now  to  be  brought 
into  print. 

Acknowledgments  are  also  due  to  another 
member  of  the  Brevoort  family,  Mrs.  Robert 
Sedgwick,  through  whom  have  been  secured 
excerpts  from  letters  written  by  her  grand- 
mother Margaret,  who  was  the  sister  of  Henry 
Brevoort  and  who  became  the  wife  of  Pro- 
fessor James  Renwick.  Margaret  Brevoort 
was  a  charming  correspondent,  and  the  Editor 
has  been  glad  to  utilize  in  his  pages  passages 
from  these  lively  and  characteristic  letters. 
The  publishers  desire  also  to  express  their 
appreciation  of  Mrs.  Sedgwick's  courtesy  in 


placing  at  their  service  the  portrait  by  Jarvis 
of  Mrs.  Renwick,  now  in  the  home  of  her 
great-granddaughter,  Mrs.  Sedgwick;  and  of 
Mr.  Kane's  similar  courtesy  in  regard  to 
the  portrait  by  Rembrandt  Peale  of  Henry 
Brevoort.  These  portraits  are  now  for  the 
first  time  reproduced. 

G.  H.  P. 

New  York,  July,  191 6. 


The  letters  of  Henry  Brevoort  to  Washing- 
ton Irving  constitute  a  body  of  manuscripts 
of  exceptional  interest;  and  this,  from  many 
points  of  view.  He  touches,  with  a  liter- 
ary grace  and  a  sense  of  humor  almost  equal 
to  those  of  his  famous  and  well-loved  friend, 
on  topics  intimately  interwoven  with  the  cul- 
tural, the  commercial,  and  the  political  devel- 
opment of  America  during  the  first  half  of  the 
nineteenth  century.  For  many  readers,  how- 
ever, the  most  immediate  charm  of  these 
letters  will  reside  in  their  social  aspect,  in 
Brevoort's  faculty  for  conjuring  up  to  us  of  a 
later  age  the  Hving  presentments  of  the  men 
and  women  in  whom  Irving  and  he  were  most 
interested.  Old  families  of  New  York,  early 
writers,  actors,  statesmen,  artists,  again  cross 
from  the  land  of  shadows,  and  carry  us  along 


familiar  highways  and    fascinating   byways 
of  our  city's  past. 

Brevoort  was  bom  in  September,  1782, 
some  six  months  prior  to  the  birth  of  Irving; 
he  married  in  181 7  Laura  Carson  of  South 
CaroHna;  in  1848  he  died,  and  lies  buried  in 
Trinity  Cemetery.  His  father,  old  Henry 
Brevoort,  was  a  notable  character,  a  man  of 
such  influence  and  determination  that  to 
meet  his  wishes  the  city  authorities  deflected 
Broadway  and  omitted  to  lay  out  that  part  of 
Eleventh  Street  on  which  faced  the  Brevoort 
homestead.  Generations  of  this  family  have 
been  prominent  in  New  York,  allied  in  many 
directions  with  other  distinguished  families. 
In  journalism  and  in  historical  writings  both 
Irving's  friend  Henry  and  his  son  Carson 
Brevoort  adventured  with  success,  while  Mrs. 
Brevoort's  fancy  dress  ball  (given  in  1840 
in  the  mansion  which  still  stands  at  the 
corner  of  Ninth  Street  and  Fifth  Avenue) 
was  the   most  splendid  social  affair  of  the 


first  half  of  the  nineteenth  century  in  New 

It  is,  however,  in  connection  with  Irving 
that  the  name  of  this  old  Dutch  family  will 
longest  be  remembered  in  the  larger  world  of 
letters;  and  it  is  indeed  fortunate  that  the 
record  of  so  deHghtful  a  friendship  can  be 
amplified  by  the  Brevoort  manuscripts,  thus 
at  last,  after  the  recent  publication  of  Irving's 
epistles,  rounding  out  their  correspondence. 

The  first  letter  among  those  preserved  in  the 
family  archives  was  written  in  New  York  at 
the  beginning  of  the  year  1811,  and  was  re- 
ceived by  Irving  during  his  stay  at  Washing- 
ton where  he  was  the  guest  of  John  P.  Van 
Ness,  one  time  mayor  of  that  city.  Although 
Irving  had  written  to  Brevoort  on  January' 
13th  a  lengthy  letter  recounting  the  trip  by 
stage  from  New  York  to  Baltimore  and  thence 
to  Washington,  his  missive  had  not  as  yet 
reached  Brevoort  six  days  later  in  New  York. 
Delivery  of  communications  takes  fewer  hours 


now  than  days  then;  and  the  journey  to 
Washington  is  called  by  Brevoort  a  pilgrimage, 
and  Irving  "an  eastern  sovereign  travelling 
through  his  vast  dominion." 

It  is  an  interesting  coincidence  that  the 
first  of  these  letters  to  the  first  internationally 
recognized  American  author  should  be  taken 
up  with  lengthy  comment  concerning  a  pub- 
lication that  was  the  first  quarterly  issued  in 
the  United  States.  Robert  Walsh's  magazine, 
The  American  Review  of  History  &  Politics, 
began  that  department  of  our  literature  which 
has  now  assumed  such  large  proportions. 
Corroborative  of  the  paucity  of  original  work 
by  American  authors  was  the  initial  number 
of  Walsh's  journal,  which  in  its  literary 
columns  could  find  little  home  talent  to 

The  non-partisan  Americanism  (an  unusual 
trait  in  those  days)  that  characterized  Irving 
is  similarly  manifest  in  Brevoort's  comments 
concerning  Walsh's    attack   on  the    admin- 


istration  of  James  Madison.  As  the  corre- 
spondence proceeds  we  shall  see  how,  often 
not  alone  in  tastes,  but  essentially  in  temper- 
ament, Irving  and  Brevoort  were  akin.  Both 
these  men  combined  with  large  fair-minded- 
ness and  all  absence  of  intemperate  party 
feeling  a  decided  reticence  that  makes  their 
comparatively  unguarded  interchange  of 
thought  the  most  striking  evidence  of  the 
deep  affection  which  bound  them  together. 

Of  the  New  York  people  who  make  their 
far-off  bow  to  us  in  Brevoort's  opening  letter, 
the  most  noted  is  DeWitt  Clinton,  then  Vice- 
President  of  the  United  States,  and  almost 
at  the  termination  of  his  long  and  distin- 
guished life.  Gulian  C.  Verplanck  also  enters ; 
and  him  we  shall  meet  often  in  this  corre- 
spondence; nor  has  his  reputation  as  historical 
student  and  critic  altogether  faded  out  of  the 
memory  of  old  New  Yorkers.  Perhaps,  how- 
ever, he  is  best  remembered  for  his  indignation 
at    Irving's    Knickerbocker's    History,    which 


Verplanck  condemned  as  an  unfair  caricature 
of  Dutch  manners  and  character. 

Two  ladies  who  figure  in  this  same  letter, 
as  in  so  many  of  those  from  Irving,  are  Mrs. 
Renwick  and  Mrs.  Hoffman,  the  latter  the 
mother  of  Matilda  whose  early  death  had 
robbed  Irving  of  his  fianc6e;  the  former  a 
woman  who  in  her  girlhood  had  been  immor- 
talized in  the  songs  of  Robert  Bums,  and  who 
throughout  her  long,  brilliant,  and  brave  life 
retained  in  extraordinary  degree  the  admira- 
tion and  affection  of  both  Irving  and  Brevoort. 

The  letter  of  the  following  month  is  devoted 
almost  entirely  to  matters  of  the  drama,  and 
the  account  of  the  dinner  given  by  Cooke, 
the  actor,  is  one  of  the  most  delectable  anec- 
dotes in  the  record  of  the  New  York  stage. 
In  November,  1810,  George  Frederick  Cooke 
made  his  first  appearance  in  America,  in  the 
character  of  Richard  III.,  and  began  a  second 
engagement  at  the  Park  Theatre  on  the  ist 
of  February,  i8ii,  as  Shylock.     This  brilliant 



Irishman  was  perhaps  the  greatest  of  the  early 
actors  in  New  York.  The  monument  erected 
to  his  memory  through  the  generosity  of 
Edmund  Kean  still  stands  in  St.  Paul's 
Churchyard  on  Broadway,  and  brings  him  to 
the  minds  of  some  of  the  more  leisurely  passers- 
by  among  the  hurrying  throngs  of  to-day. 

In  far  different  vein  is  the  next  missive. 
Brevoort  has  left  New  York  and  is  now 
associated  with  John  Jacob  Astor  in  the  fur 
trade.  He  writes  to  Irving  from  Mackinac 
and  gives  notable  descriptions  of  his  canoe 
trip  from  Montreal.  A  second  letter  from 
Mackinac  takes  up  a  topic  which,  even  after 
the  passage  of  more  than  a  century,  we  Ameri- 
cans cannot  contemplate  without  a  sense  of 
regret  bordering  on  shame.  The  treatment 
of  the  Indians  by  the  early  settlers  involved 
acts  often  ruthless  and  sometimes  criminally 
aggressive;  and  Brevoort's  intense  desire  to 
mitigate  the  wrongs  suffered  by  the  Indians 
had  a  humane  as  well  as  a  practical  basis. 


Even  Jefferson,  who  during  his  administration 
had  shown  himself  generally  fair-minded  to- 
wards the  red  men,  so  shared  in  his  country- 
men's wish  to  acquire  Indian  territory  as  to 
condone  acts  which  were  essentially  deeds  of 
unjustifiable  barter.  The  French  under  Na- 
poleon, as  well  as  the  English,  treated  the 
savages  with  more  consideration.  The  Ameri- 
cans, at  the  time  of  Brevoort's  letter,  were 
committing  acts,  both  in  hunting  upon  Indian 
territory  and  in  acquiring  that  territory, 
leading  inevitably  to  Indian  warfare.  The 
expostulations  of  men  like  Brevoort  could  not 
avail  in  stopping  a  procedure  which  we  must 
to  this  day  shield  under  the  doubtful  aegis 
of  the  phrase:  "survival  of  the  fittest." 

Brevoort's  letter  has  an  amusing  paragraph 
wherein  he  invokes  divine  Apollo  to  avert  his 
face  from  Irving  (whom  Brevoort  calls  the 
"renowned  Knickerbocker")  until  his  friend 
shall  have  finished  his  clerical  work  and  turned 
again  from  commerce  to  literature;  and,  fur- 


ther  on,  there  is  another  reference  to  Irving's 
Knickerbocker's  History,  which  had  already 
found  its  way  into  the  far  outposts  of  the 
Indian  territory. 

In  the  third  of  these  Mackinac  letters  Bre- 
voort  continues  his  advocacy  of  the  rights  of 
the  tribes  and  gives  a  vi-vid  account  of  a 
scene  in  which  an  Indian  magician  gets  in 
touch  with  one  of  his  Manitoos;  but,  for  us, 
the  most  notable  paragraph  in  this  letter  is 
that  in  which  Bfevoort  dwells  on  the  magic 
"contained  in  that  honest  little  word  ' home.' " 
Irving's  own  letters  reveal  the  same  sentiment 
similarly  expressed. 

The  lines  of  July  29*^*  conclude  in  lighter 
vein  the  fourth  of  this  group  of  Mackinac  let- 
ters, a  series  in  itself  delightful,  and  of  special 
note  if  we  accept  the  family  tradition  that 
Brevoort  was  the  first  New  Yorker  of  any 
eminence  to  dwell  on  that  island. 

After  he  had  returned  to  New  York,  Bre- 
voort's  parents  offered  him  what  was  then 


considered  the  greatest  of  opportunities:  a 
visit  to  Europe.  He  sets  out,  and,  at  Paris, 
his  next  letter  to  Irving  is  dated  April,  1812. 
The  war  then  in  progress  between  England 
and  France  of  course  led  to  many  exagger- 
ations and  misstatements  in  the  English  press, 
from  which  Americans  gained  a  wrong  idea 
of  the  conditions  of  the  French  peasantry, — 
much  as  (although  with  more  truth)  it  has 
been  England's  policy  to  emphasize  the  eco- 
nomic hardships  of  her  enemies  in  the  present 
war.  Brevoort  gives  Irving  reliable  and  first- 
hand information,  adding  to  his  remarks  con- 
cerning the  peasantry  news  relating  to  the 
Emperor  and  his  plan  of  campaign.  We 
meet  with  personal  descriptions  of  Napoleon 
and  the  Empress,  whom  Brevoort  saw  at  the 
opera,  and  to  whom,  much  to  his  indignation, 
he  was  not  introduced,  because  of  the  neg- 
lect of  Mr.  Barlow.  His  interest  in  new 
scenes  does  not  make  him  forgetful  of  Irving's 
affairs,  and  in  his  request  for  copies  of  Knicker- 


backer's  History  and  Salmagundi  for  pre- 
sentation to  Madame  D'Arblay  we  have  the 
earUest  evidence  of  Brevoort's  continued  ac- 
tivities in  furthering  the  Hterary  fame  of  his 

It  was  but  six  weeks  after  the  date  of  this 
letter  that  the  War  of  1 8 1 2  began,  only  five  days 
before  Great  Britain's  Orders  in  Council  (the 
immediate  cause  of  the  conflict)  were  repealed. 
Worthy  of  notice  is  it  that  in  Brevoort's 
letters  from  Europe  during  the  years  18 12  and 
1 8 13  the  war  with  Great  Britain  plays  a  minor 
part,  so  much  more  does  he  seem  to  be  inter- 
ested in  matters  of  literature,  science,  and  art ; 
but  that  neither  he  nor  Irving  was  devoid  of 
the  patriotic  spirit  which  animated  the  young 
men  of  those  times  is  proved  by  Brevoort's 
acceptance  of  a  commission  as  Lieutenant  in 
the  "Iron  Greys"  and  Irving's  service  as 
Military  Attach6  on  the  staff  of  Governor 

The   Edinburgh   letter  of  December  12th, 



1 8 1 2 ,  begins  with  a  reference  to  living's  brother 
Peter,  who,  throughout  this  correspondence, 
is  often  alluded  to  as  the  "Doctor,"  a  title 
due  to  some  early  medical  studies,  and  kept  up 
by  his  friends  as  the  nickname  by  which  he 
was  known  among  that  small  coterie  of  happy 
youths  whom  Washington  Irving  called  the 
"Lads  of  Kilkenny"  and  whom  Paulding 
generally  referred  to  as  the  "Ancient  &  Hon- 
orable Order"  and  the  "Ancient  Club  of  New 
York."  Almost  all  of  these  nine  youths 
figure  so  frequently  in  the  letters  of  the  two 
friends  that  it  may  be  well  to  recall  some  of 
the  circimistances  of  their  early  association, 
and  their  familiar  appellations. 

An  old  wooden  mansion  near  the  then  village 
of  Newark  had  been  inherited  by  Gouvemeur 
Kemble  from  his  mother's  brother,  Isaac 
Gouvemeur,  and  here,  in  this  "Bachelors' 
Hall"  or  "Bachelors'  Nest,"  there  met  fre- 
quently the  following  group  of  merry  young 
New  Yorkers: 


Henry  Brevoort,        nicknamed  "Nuncle," 

James  K.  Paulding  "  "Billy  Taylor," 

Gouvemeur  Kemble  "  "The  Patroon," 

David  Porter  "  "Sinbad," 

Henry  Ogden  "  "Supercargo," 

Richard  McCall  "  "Oorombates," 

Ebenezer  Irving  "  "Capt.  Grealheart," 

Peter  Irving  "  "The  Doctor," 

and,  finally,  Washington  Irving  who,  as  Gen- 
eral James  Grant  Wilson  has  suggested, 
having  no  alias,  was  probably  responsible  for 
the  titles  of  the  other  members  of  the  club. 
To  Newark  they  would  often  set  forth  in  stage- 
coaches, and  the  pranks  and  pastimes  of  those 
early  days  at  "  Cockloft  Hall "  never  faded  out 
of  the  memory  of  the  participants  in  its 
pleasures.  Washington  Irving,  in  alluding, 
towards  the  end  of  his  life,  to  the  gay  hours 
spent  there,  said  to  his  old  friend  Gouvemeur 
Kemble:  "Who  would  have  thought  that  we 
should  ever  have  lived  to  be  two  such  re- 
spectable old  gentlemen? " 

Reverting  to  Brevoort's  first  letter  from 
Edinburgh,  we  find  him,  after  some  caustic 


comments  regarding  the  great  critic  Jefifrey, 
giving  Irving  an  enthusiastic  description  of  a 
meeting  of  the  Royal  Society  of  Edinburgh, 
then  immersed  in  a  spirited  discussion  con- 
cerning opposing  theories  of  fire  and  water, 
a  controversy  bringing  to  mind  some  of  the 
early  Greek  philosophies.  There  is  mention, 
also,  of  the  portrait  of  Mrs.  Renwick  by  Jarvis, 
now  reproduced  through  the  gracious  courtesy 
of  her  great-granddaughter  Mrs.  R.  Sedgwick. 
John  Leslie  Jarvis,  bom  in  England  in  1780, 
came  in  early  life  to  America,  where  his  pic- 
tures, painted  for  the  most  part  in  New  York 
and  in  the  southern  cities,  made  him  one  of  the 
very  popular  artists  of  the  last  century's 
early  decades.  DeWitt  Clinton,  John  Ran- 
dolph, and  FitzGreene  Halleck  were  among 
the  distinguished  men  who  sat  for  him  prior  to 
his  death  in  New  York  in  1840;  but  nowhere 
is  the  charm  of  his  work  more  evident  than  in 
the  portrait  of  Mrs.  Renwick. 

The  next   letter  from   Edinburgh,   dated 


March  i^*,  1813,  is  not  alone  the  lengthiest 
epistle  in  the  entire  Irving-Brevoort  corre- 
spondence, but  is  in  all  probability  the  most 
extensive  letter  of  its  kind  ever  written  either 
to  Irving  or  to  any  other  American  author. 
Beginning  in  a  vein  of  sentiment  mingled 
with  humor,  with  amusing  references  to  the 
well-recoUected  table  in  Brevoort's  library 
at  Mrs.  Ryckman's  lodgings,  (a  room  then 
occupied  in  soUtary  splendor  by  Irving,)  Bre- 
voort  soon  launches  into  an  account  of  liter- 
ary and  theatrical  affairs.  He  sees  Kemble 
perform;  meets  him  at  Walter  Scott's,  and 
hears  him  expound  the  principles  of  the  drama. 
Mrs,  Siddons;  Talma;  Clairon,  the  French  ac- 
tress; David  Garrick;  Cooke,  Lister,  Mathews, 
and  Braham,  with  other  comedians  and  trage- 
dians famous  in  the  record  of  the  stage,  enter 
these  pages,  emphasizing  anew  how  keenly 
interested  both  Brevoort  and  Irving  were  in 
the  art  of  the  actor, — ^an  art  which  Irving, 
during  his  stay  at  Dresden  in  1823,  sought  to 


emulate  in  more  than  one  amateur  perform- 
ance. In  the  course  of  this  talk  of  actors  and 
acting,  we  find  Brevoort  quoting  a  phrase  of 
Kemble's  that  deserves  to  be  perpetuated  on 
account  of  its  felicity.  Speaking  of  Cooke's 
journal,  Kemble  confided  to  Brevoort  that  its 
reliability  was  not  to  be  accepted,  as  Cooke 
"was  prone  to  draw  upon  his  drtmken  imagina- 
tion for  his  sober  facts." 

A  man  of  letters  who  figures  in  a  passing 
way  in  this  epistle  is  William  Roscoe  (whose 
name  Brevoort  spells  "Rosco" — this  being 
only  one  instance  of  numerous  misspellings 
both  as  to  proper  and  common  names,  errors 
which  have  been  preserved  in  the  text  of  these 
voliomes).  While  Roscoe  is  remembered 
among  historians  by  reason  of  his  lives  of  Lo- 
renzo de'  Medici  and  Leo  X.,  he  has  a  more 
appealing  claim  on  lovers  of  books  because  of  a 
poem  which  he  wrote  after  pecuniary  troubles 
forced  him  to  dispose  of  his  cherished  library; 
and  as  it  is  a  poem  which  seems  to  have  been 


almost  lost  sight  of  in  the  course  of  time,  one 
may  be  pardoned  for  yielding  to  personal 
predilection  in  reprinting  it  here. 



As  one  who,  destined  from  his  Friends  to  part. 
Regrets  his  loss,  yet  hopes  again  erewhile 
To  share  their  converse  and  enjoy  their  smile, 
And  tempers,  as  he  may,  Affliction's  dart, — 
Thus,  loved  associates!    Chiefs  of  elder  art! 
Teachers  of  wisdom!  who  could  once  beguile 
My  tedious  hoiurs,  and  Ughten  every  toil, 
I  now  resign  you;  nor  with  fainting  heart — 
For,  pass  a  few  short  years,  or  days,  or  hotirs, 
And  happier  seasons  may  their  dawn  unfold, 
And  all  yotir  sacred  fellowship  restore; 
When,  freed  from  earth,  unlimited  its  powers, 
Mind  shall  with  Mind  direct  communion  hold, 
And  kindred  spirits  meet  to  part  no  more. 

But  a  far  greater  author  than  Roscoe  comes 
in  for  extended  comment  in  Brevoort's  Edin- 
burgh letter.  It  is  here  that  he  gives  a  notable 
portrait  of  Walter  Scott,  writing  of  him  that 
"Scott  is  the  man  of  my  choice;  he  has  not  a 


grain  of  pride  or  affectation  in  his  whole  make- 
up. Neither  the  voice  of  fame  nor  the 
homage  of  the  great  have  altered  in  the  least 
the  native  simplicity  of  his  heart.  His  days 
are  spent  in  the  domestic  endearments  of  an 
amiable  family  and  in  the  society  of  a  few 
selected  friends  whom  he  entertains  like 
Maecenas,  and  never  fails  to  delight  by  setting 
an  example  of  perfect  good  htimour  and  harm- 
less conviviality."  In  a  further  paragraph 
Brevoort  informs  Irving  of  a  bit  of  news  that 
may  be  unfamiliar  even  to  some  of  Scott's 
present-day  admirers — that  Scott  was  a  drama- 
tist as  well  as  a  poet  and  a  novelist,  Erskine 
having  in  his  possession  "an  important  tra- 
gedy written  many  years  ago. "  To  this  same 
William  Erskine,  suspected  in  literary  circles 
of  Edinburgh  as  being  the  author  of  the 
Bridal  of  Triermain,  Scott  addressed  the 
introduction  to  Marmion. 

We  shall  soon  see  how  Brevoort's  liking  for 
Francis  Jeffrey,  then  famous  as  the  caustic 


editor  of  the  Edinburgh  Review,  and  later 
eminent  as  Lord  Advocate  for  Scotland,  in- 
creased to  such  an  extent  that  when  JeflErey 
visited  America  he  brought  with  him  many- 
letters  of  introduction  from  Brevoort;  but  in 
the  present  missive,  Brevoort's  opinion  of 
Jeffrey  led  him,  with  full  recognition  of  the 
great  critic's  brilliancy  of  conversation,  to 
emphasize  his  foibles  and  to  recognize  with 
keen  vision  that  Jeffrey  "is  blessed  with  such 
an  immaculate  degree  of  taste  as  to  contemn 
everything  in  the  whole  world  both  morally 
and  physically," — ^an  epigrammatic  analysis 
much  to  the  point. 

Apart  from  Scott,  the  man  in  Edinburgh 
who  most  decidedly  roused  the  enthusiasm 
of  the  yotmg  New  Yorker  was  Professor 
Playfair,  a  Scottish  mathematician  and 
natural  philosopher  whom  Jeffrey  describes 
as  "possessing  in  the  highest  degree  all 
of  the  characteristics  both  of  a  fine  and 
beautiful    understanding"; — ^while    Brevoort 



writes  of  him  that  he  is  "a  man  who  unites 
the  profundity  of  a  Newton  with  the  simple 
soul  of  D'Alembert,  whom  it  would  be  as 
impossible  to  describe  as  it  would  be  vain  to 
imitate."  This  is  as  ardent  an  expression  of 
admiration  as  Brevoort  ever  voiced;  and  in 
our  own  days,  when,  even  among  scholars,  the 
murky  clouds  of  war  have  in  all  countries 
dimmed  the  faculty  of  impartial  judgment,  one 
likes  to  think  that  Brevoort's  enthusiasm  for 
this  great  Scottish  man  of  science  was  based 
on  the  intellectuality,  catholicity,  the  dominat- 
ing liberality  of  Playfair  (whose  very  name  is 
sentient  with  significance,  like  the  characters 
in  Pilgrim's  Progress).  There  is  no  lovelier 
tribute  from  a  scholar  to  his  teacher  than  in 
those  lines  where  Brevoort  writes:  "His  mind 
is  lifted  above  all  National  prejudices.  He 
sees  and  encourages  merit  from  any  quarter 
of  the  globe  with  an  equal  eye  of  approbation 
and  will  condescend  to  receive  the  opinions  of 
a  child. ' '    Nor  shall  we  forget  that  when  these 


words  were  written  Europe  was  involved  in  the 
Napoleonic  period's  titanic  struggle. 

Many  personages  known  to  fame  are  present 
in  the  next  letter,  written  June  24**^,  1813,  at 
London,  where  Brevoort,  accompanied  by 
Peter  Irving,  had  arrived  a  fortnight  earlier. 
Distinguished  women  figure  preponderantly 
in  these  pages.  Brevoort  meets  Joanna 
Bailey  and  Miss  Edgeworth;  sees,  at  Drury 
Lane  Theatre,  the  great  Madame  de  Stael 
with  her  "very  reverend  black  beard  and  fea- 
tures that  correspond  to  it";  hears  Mrs. 
Siddons  read  the  whole  play  of  Hamlet; 
describes  Madame  D'Arblay  whose  Evelina, 
now  almost  forgotten,  vied  in  popularity  with 
the  works  of  her  rival  French  novelists.  His 
words  concerning  the  sublimity  of  Mrs. 
Siddons'  art,  when  "the  theatre  echoed  with 
sobs  and  shrieks  and  'Bravos,'"  recall  the 
emotional  power  of  that  supreme  tragic  ac- 
tress of  England ;  and  this  intense  scene  finds 
an  amusing  contrast  in  the  following  para- 



graph  where  we  read  of  a  travesty  on  Hamlet, 
acted  at  Lister's  benefit,  in  which  Ophelia 
presents  to  the  King  and  Queen  a  bunch  of 
parsnips  and  a  head  of  cabbage — ^mtmching 
the  while  "a  stout  turnip." 

Of  the  memorable  men  who  here  pass 
through  Brevoort's  pages  the  poet  Campbell, 
the  philosopher  Sir  James  Mackintosh  (one 
of  whose  writings,  translated  by  Madame  de 
Stael,  influenced  Europe's  opinion  of  Napo- 
leon), the  astronomer  Herschel,  the  Swedish 
Ambassador  De  Kantzow,  and  John  Howard 
Paytie,  actor  and  author,  whose  Home,  Sweet 
Home  assures  his  fame,  attest  the  variety  of 
circles  to  which  Brevoort  had  admittance. 
Here,  also,  we  find  mention  of  introductory 
letters  for  Francis  Jeffrey.  But  most  impor- 
tant of  all  is  that  brief  paragraph  in  which 
Brevoort  tells  Irving  that  he  had  given  Walter 
Scott  a  copy  of  Knickerbocker's  History  and 
that  he  was  enclosing  Scott's  letter  in  reference 
to  Irving's  work. 


Although  this  letter  is  familiar  to  students, 
of  Irving's  life,  and  its  importance  in  the  his- 
tory of  American  literature  well  understood, 
there  is  in  this  connection  an  interesting  cir- 
cumstance that  has,  it  would  seem,  never  yet 
fotind  its  way  into  any  biography  of  Irving. 
Brevoort  writes  that  he  had  sent  Irving's 
volume  to  Scott  "in  return  for  some  very  rare 
books  that  he  gave  me  respecting  the  early 
History  of  New  England. ' '  These  books  were 
presented  to  Brevoort  as  a  result  of  conversa- 
tions in  which  Brevoort  had  related  to  Scott 
presumably  those  very  experiences  among  the 
Indian  nations  which  are  recorded  in  the  mis- 
sives written  to  Irving  from  Mackinac.  Scott 
haid  at  one  time  inten'ded  to  write  on  the  Ameri- 
can Indian,  but  later  gave  up  the  idea;  and 
finding  how  much  immediate  and  personal 
information  Brevoort  had  on  this  subject,  he 
donated  to  his  young  American  friend  his  own 
rare  books  on  early  New  England  history,  in 
the  hope,  no  doubt,  that  Brevoort  himself 


would  some  day  issue  some  such  work  as  had 
been  the  subject  of  their  conversations.  This 
hope  played  through  Brevoort's  mind  at 
various  intervals  throughout  his  life;  and, 
when  we  consider  his  decided  talent  for  writing, 
we  must  regret  that  later  cares  and  responsi- 
bilities prevented  its  fruition. 
I  A  number  of  years  intervene  between  Bre- 
voort's London  letter  and  that  which  here 
succeeds  it,  a  letter  written  from  New  York 
in  1818.  In  the  meantime  Brevoort  had  re- 
turned to  his  native  city  and  Irving  had  left  it. 
Not  till  1830  was  Brevoort  to  revisit  Europe, 
two  years  prior  to  Irving's  return,  after  an 
absence  of  seventeen  years,  to  America.  Dur- 
ing their  lengthy  separation  Brevoort  re- 
mained ever  loyal  to  the  interests  of  Irving, 
ever  ready  to  put  his  intellectual  as  well  as 
his  financial  resources  at  the  disposal  of  his 

'    This  part  of  their  correspondence  begins 
with  an  account  of  a  scurrilous  attack  on 


Brevoort  in  the  form  of  an  advertisement  in  a 
newspaper,  an  attack  which  Brevoort  met  by 
personally  chastising  the  offender,  who  seems 
to  have  been  a  man  unworthy  of  being  chal- 
lenged, in  the  usual  manner  of  the  day,  to  a 
duel.  A  duel  is,  however,  mentioned  in  the 
same  letter — that  between  Perry  and  Heath, 
brave  men  both,  where  Perry,  to  make  re- 
paration for  his  wrongful  attack  on  Heath, 
restores  his  own  self-respect  by  receiving, 
without  returning,  the  fire  of  his  opponent. 
Brevoort 's  letter  abounds  in  all  manner  of 
personal  news  so  welcome  to  the  absent  Irving. 
Paulding;  the  Renvicks;  Jack  Nicholson,  the 
"jolly  Tar";  Miss  Bradish,  the  daughter  of 
their  old  landlady;  Gouvemeur  Kemble;  the 
painter  Jarvis,  and  others  pass  in  review;  while 
Irving's  old  chief,  Daniel  D.  Tompkins,  now 
Vice-President  under  Monroe,  asks  Brevoort 
solicitously  concerning  Irving  and  expresses  a 
desire,  that  friends  were  so  often  to  reiterate, 
for  his  speedy  return  to  America. 


With  Brevoort's  next  two  letters  we  arrive 
at  a  significant  period  in  their  long  friendship 
when  matters  concerning  the  publication  of 
the  Sketch  Book  were  undertaken  and  carried 
through  largely  by  Brevoort,  who  purchased 
the  paper,  attended  to  the  proof  sheets,  and 
made  arrangements  with  publishers  and  book- 
sellers ;  thus  in  many  ways  rendering  assistance 
to  Irving  at  a  time  when,  after  the  shattering 
of  his  prospects  in  commercial  life,  success 
along  literary  lines  was  so  necessary  and 
determining  a  factor  in  his  career.  Nor  were 
Brevoort's  services  limited  to  the  immediate 
phases  of  manufacture  and  sale,  for  it  was  he 
who  wrote  a  commendatory  article  in  the 
Evening  Post,  which  led  Irving  in  his  letter  of 
September  9*^,  18 19,  to  say  how  he  had  been 
touched  by  the  manner  in  which  the  editor  of 
the  Post  had  noticed  him. 

Many  families  besides  that  of  the  Irvings 
felt  the  economic  hardships  of  those  years, 
and  in  his  following  letter  Brevoort  recounts 



how  "the  whole  aspect  of  domestic  life  has 
changed  since  you  left  us — all  the  ordinary- 
sources  of  industry  seem  to  have  closed — a 
great  portion  of  the  Houses  of  the  City  are  to 
let  and  the  inhabitants  obliged  to  seek  a  liveli- 
hood elsewhere."  He  adds,  however,  that 
even  amid  the  pressure  of  the  times,  Irving's 
work  increases  in  popiilarity;  and  with  char- 
acteristic good  judgment  he  speaks  of  the 
Legend  of  Sleepy  Hollow,  (which  had  just 
appeared,)"^ as  "one  of  the  best  articles  you 
have  ever  written. " 

In  this  letter  Brevoort  sent  a  pamphlet 
which  must  have  both  interested  and  depressed 
Irving:  the  correspondence  between  Decatur 
and  Barron.  Both  Decatur  and  his  wife,  it 
will  be  remembered,  had  been  fellow  lodgers 
of  Irving  and  Brevoort  in  Rector  Street,  and 
Decatur  had  wished  to  have  Irving  accept  an 
appointment  at  Washington  in  connection 
with  the  Naval  Board.  While  serving  on  the 
Board  of  Navy  Commissioners,  Decatur  had 


made  some  remarks  criticizing  Commodore 
Barron — remarks  which,  in  spite  of  the  long 
correspondence  that  followed  between  the  two 
men,  led  to  a  challenge  which  Decatur  felt 
obliged  to  accept.  Twelve  years  earlier,  Deca- 
tur had  served  as  a  member  of  a  court-martial 
appointed  to  try  Barron  for  having  sur- 
rendered the  Chesapeake  to  a  British  man-of- 
war;  and  it  was  Decatur  himself  who  was  next 
given  command  of  this  famous  frigate.  Not 
impossibly  the  memory  of  those  events  made 
Barron  unwilling  to  be  satisfied  with  anything 
less  than  the  arbitrament  of  arms.  Both  men 
were  wotmded  in  the  duel,  Decatur  fatally. 
To  Irving,  now  at  Paris,  Brevoort  addresses 
his  next  letter,  in  November,  1820,  replying 
to  Irving's  letter  of  September  22^,  wherein 
is  first  broached  the  project  to  navigate  the 
Seine  by  steamboat.  Irving's  brothers  in 
America,  Ebenezer  and  William,  considered 
with  grave  doubt  the  commercial  enterprise  in 
which  Washington  and  Peter  were  engaging; 


but  Brevoort,  while  expressing  his  fear  that 
the  scheme  would  not  prove  profitable,  was 
yet  ready  to  help  his  friend  in  financing  it; 
and  it  was  on  Brevoort  rather  than  on  his  own 
brothers  that  Irving  drew  for  the  funds  to 
whose  payment  he  had  already  committed 

Brevoort's  next  letter  gives  Irving  news  of 
affairs  at  Columbia  College,  where  their  friend 
Renwick  has  been  appointed  to  the  Pro- 
fessorship of  Experimental  Philosophy  and 
Chemistry.  Columbia  at  that  time  had  five 
professors  in  all,  of  whom  Anthon  and  Mc- 
Vickar  still  remain  noted  names  in  the  annals 
of  teaching.  Brevoort  observes  that  "the 
trustees  seem  resolved  to  raise  the  reputation 
of  Columbia  to  the  first  rank";  but  it  would 
appear  that  the  funds  were  not  adequate  for 
much  immediate  development. 

From  college  matters  Brevoort  turns  to 
topics  of  the  stage.  In  the  previous  Novem- 
ber, Edmund  Kean  had  made  his  initial  ap- 


pearance  before  an  American  audience,  and 
his  success  in  Shakespearean  and  other  r61es 
stirred  the  admirers  of  Cooper  to  a  high  pitch 
of  envy.  As  soon  as  Kean's  engagement  in 
the  Anthony  Street  Theatre  ended,  Thomas  A. 
Cooper  began  his,  playing  many  of  the  same 
parts.  This  amusing  stage  warfare  attained 
considerable  proportions  in  those  times  when 
the  theatre  was  an  important  institution  in  the 
social  life  of  New  York.  Kean's  weakness  of 
moral  fibre  did  much  to  abbreviate  public 
esteem,  and  his  refusal  to  play  before  a  Boston 
audience  on  accotmt  of  the  paucity  of  specta- 
tors so  aroused  public  indignation  as  to  cause 
his  early  return  to  England.  Several  years 
later,  when  he  returned  to  this  country,  the 
irritation  against  him  broke  forth  into  one  of 
the  most  disgraceful  riots  that  ever  took  place 
in  a  New  York  theatre. 

Brevoort's  next  missive  is  in  reply  to  Ir- 
ving's  of  the  lo*''  of  March,  wherein  the 
author  of  the  Sketch  Book,  who  was  so  success- 



fully  establishing  the  good  name  of  American 
literature  abroad,  answers,  not  without  a 
touch  of  resentment,  the  attacks  that  had 
been  made  on  him  for  remaining  so  long  from 
his  native  land.  Brevoort  sees  the  cogency 
of  his  friend's  arguments  and,  henceforth,  that 
topic  is  allowed  to  rest.  As  if  in  reply  to 
Irving's  own  candid  exposition  of  his  more 
intimate  feelings,  Brevoort  now  writes  in  a 
most  pei-sonal  vein  concerning  his  own  aspira- 
tions and  capabilities:  "To  leave  this  world 
with  a  mere  hie  jacet  is  too  mortifying  to  be 
endured";  but  he  breaks  off  suddenly  to  give 
Irving  news  of  Paulding,  Verplanck,  the 
Coopers,  Beekman  and  Astor,  Nicholson,  the 
Hofifmans,  and  other  New  York  families, 
flavoring  his  potpourri  of  pleasant  gossip  with 
just  a  touch  of  scandal. 

In  the  postscript  mention  is  made  of  Ir- 
ving's picttire  by  Newton  which  "will  be  ex- 
hibited next  week  in  the  Annual  exhibition  of 
the  Academy  of  fine  Arts." — No  doubt  it  was 


because  of  this  picture  that  Brevoort  kept 
the  catalogue  of  that  exhibition  among  his 
papers,  where  we  find  it,  stained  with  age, — a 
most  entertaining  little  pamphlet.  One  hun- 
dred and  twenty-nine  paintings  were  shown 
in  this  seventh  exhibit  of  the  Academy,  of 
which  ten  were  by  John  Trumbull.  No.  46, 
entitled  merely  Portrait  of  a  Lady,  is  by 
Jarvis, — very  possibly  the  portrait  of  Mrs. 
Renwick;  No.  47  by  "J.  Newton"  is  listed 
as  "Portrait  of  Washington  Irving,  Esq.,  lent 
by  H.  Brevoort,  Esq."  Newton,  the  talented 
nephew  of  Gilbert  Stuart,  had  become  a 
close  friend — through  the  artist  Leslie — of  Ir- 
ving's  in  London,  and  Leslie's  Autobiographi- 
cal Recollections  record  many  pleasant  hours 
spent  together  by  these  three  young  fellows  of 
talent.  The  early  death  of  Newton  remained 
for  both  of  his  friends  a  lasting  grief. 

But  apart  from  Newton's  portrait,  there  are 
many  points  to  arrest  attention  in  this  cata- 
logue of  the  Academy's  seventh  show.     The 



names  of  the  directors  and  officers  include 
various  of  Irving's  friends.  John  Trumbull  is 
the  President  (which  partially  accounts  for  his 
full  representation  in  the  exhibition);  John 
R.  Murray,  the  Vice-President;  and  Charles 
King,  WUham  Oracle,  Gulian  C.  Verplanck, 
James  Renwick,  and  Henry  Brevoort  are 
among  the  nine  directors.  Adding  to  this 
niimber  the  Treasurer  and  the  Secretary,  one 
notes  with  amusement  that  the  fourteen 
academicians  exceeded  by  the  close  margin 
of  one  the  total  number  of  directors  and 
officers.  But  even  more  amusing  is  the  get-up 
of  this  little  catalogue.  Lengthy  passages 
from  Shakespeare  and  Voltaire,  stanzas  from 
Scott,  and  quotations  from  the  Bible  accom- 
pany some  of  the  paintings  of  Trumbull,  New- 
ton, and  West ;  while  in  cataloguing  a  picture  by 
Guido,  the  careful  officers  saw  fit  to  append  the 
statement,  "Undoubted  Original."  Of  his- 
torical note  is  the  information  with  which  the 
catalogue  concludes,  recording  that  "the  re- 


maining  Pictures  in  the  Library  with  uniform 
frames,  are  part  of  the  valuable  donation  given 
to  the  Academy  by  the  Ex-Emperor  Napoleon 
on  his  being  elected  an  honorary  member." 

Two  other  letters  of  this  same  year,  1821, 
treat  of  both  business  and  literary  affairs  of 
Irving,  and  give  to  the  absentee  considerable 
direct  news  of  his  brothers.  It  is  the  last  year 
of  the  life  of  William  Irving,  a  man  whose 
poetical  abilities  and  distinct  wit  had  shown 
themselves  in  the  early  years  when  with  his 
brother-in-law  James  K.  Paulding  and  with  his 
brother  Washington  he  had  made  Salmagundi 
the  talk  of  the  town.  He  had  served  in  Con- 
gress until,  in  181 8,  ill  health  led  him  to  resign, 
and  he  had  ever  been  a  loyal  guardian  of  the 
interests  of  his  young  brother.  Ebenezer, 
whom  Brevoort  characterizes  as  a  real  philo- 
sopher, was  an  equally  attractive  personality, 
and  of  even  greater  service  in  taking  charge 
in  America  of  Washington's  writings.  Peter 
Irving,  the  companion  of  both  Henry  Bre- 



voort  and  of  Washington  Irving  in  their  travels 
abroad,  has  a  place  in  the  record  of  New  York 
jotimalism  as  the  publisher  of  the  Morning 
Chronicle,  which  began  its  career  in  1802;  and 
figures  in  literature  as  having  planned  with 
Washington  the  work  which  eventuated  as  the 
famous  Knickerbocker's  History  of  New  York. 
The  fourth  brother,  "John  Treat  Irving,  also 
had  a  literary  bent,  early  in  life  made  evident 
by  his  poetical  contributions  to  the  Morning 
Chronicle,  but  his  chief  reputation  centres  in 
his  career  as  lawyer  and  judge.  That  all  five 
of  the  Irving  brothers  enter  into  the  pages  of 
these  letters  of  the  year  1821  adds  in  an  in- 
timate way  to  their  interest. 

If  we  turn  to  Irving's  letters  to  Brevoort,  we 
shall  find  one  written  in  June,  1822,  and  one 
belonging  to  the  month  of  December,  1824,  the 
only  recorded  epistles  between  the  years  1821 
and  1825.  That  these  ever  reached  Brevoort 
there  is  no  evidence,  and  certain  it  is  that  the 
long  hiatus  in  their  correspondence  was  a 



source  of  regret  to  both  of  the  friends ;  Irving, 
in  his  sensitive  way,  fearing  that  Brevoort  had 
perhaps  lost  interest  in  him,  while  Brevoort 
surmised  that  Irving's  wanderings  and  liter- 
ary pursuits  were  the  cause  of  his  silence. 
Certain  it  is  that  letters  went  astray  on  both 
sides,  and  a  misunderstanding  resulted.  On 
New  Year's  Day  of  1827,  Brevoort,  in  answer 
to  the  reproaches  of  Irving  reported  to  him 
by  Ebenezer,  takes  pen  in  hand,  and  in  the 
most  cordial  spirit  proceeds  to  bridge  the  gap. 
He  repudiates  the  suggestion  that  occupation 
with  his  own  affairs  has  made  him  insensible 
to  the  career  of  Irving.  After  referring  to  the 
episode  as  "the  only  instance  of  discord  that 
has  ever  risen  between  us,"  he  adds,  "let  us 
then,  my  dear  Irving,  begin  the  new  year  by 
a  renewal  of  kind  and  affectionate  recollec- 
tions, and  by  frank  and  frequent  interchange 
of  our  sentiments."  He  continues  with  vo- 
luminous details  concerning  many  friends  and 
acquaintances,   among  whom  we  note  with 



particular  interest  the  name  of  Philip  Hone. 
Hone,  one  of  the  most  prominent  characters 
of  the  New  York  of  his  time,  had  just  been 
defeated  for  re-election  to  the  mayoralty,  and 
Brevoort,  after  alluding  to  the  manner  in 
which  he  was  defeated  as  an  insult  to  so  worthy 
a  man,  remarks,  "sic  transit  &c."  But,  cu- 
riously enough,  to  the  very  event  which  led 
Brevoort  thus  to  comment  on  the  passing  of 
"gloria  mundi"  is  due  the  continuance  of 
Hone's  posthumous  fame.  As  financier,  as 
politician,  as  philanthropist  he  would,  for  all 
his ,  excellent  traits,  long  since  have  been  an 
obliterated  figure  on  the  palimpsest  of  our 
city's  history.  But  the  diary  that  he  began 
in  1827,  after  his  mayoralty  had  ended,  re- 
mains a  fascinating  chronicle  which  will  con- 
tinue to  keep  his  name  alive  as  long  as  the  past 
of  New  York  makes  appeal  to  its  citizens, 
i  Brevoort's  letter  is  so  full  of  amusing  gossip 
that  only  a  few  of  its  paragraphs  can  be  re- 
ferred to  here.    But  we  must  note  his  charac- 



terization  of  James  Fenimore  Cooper,  "Mr. 
Spy  Cooper, "  as  he  calls  him,  a  man  with  "a 
rough  and  confident  manner  of  expressing 
himself, "  but  "a  right  good  fellow  at  bottom. " 
Cooper,  Brevoort  had  come  to  know  well  at 
"  The  Lunch, "  a  prandial  club  which  included 
artists,  authors,  and  men  of  affairs  who  found 
much  enjoyment  in  one  another's  company. 
Anecdotes  of  old  Major  Fairlie  enliven  the 
epistle,  and  his  comment  on  the  deaths  of 
Jefferson  and  Adams,  where  Fairlie  observes 
of  Charles  Carroll  of  CarroUton,  (now  the 
only  surviving  signer  of  the  Declaration  of 
Independence,)  "Well!  the  old  boy  is  left  in 
a  fearful  minority, "  is  a  witticism  that  binds 
with  a  strand  of  humor  the  days  of  the  Revo- 
lution to  the  epoch  of  half  a  century  later. 

Irving  was  more  than  glad  to  respond  to  his 
friend's  advances,  and  his  April  letter  from 
Madrid  restores  the  status  to  its  old  warmth. 
Brevoort's  reply  in  November,  1827,  contains 
not  alone  expressions  of  personal  affection, 



but,  in  its  reference  to  the  Life  of  Columbus, 
assures  Irving  (who  has  had  some  doubts  on 
the  subject)  of  the  cordiality  of  American 
pubHc  opinion  towards  him  and  his  work. 
The  doings  of  many  of  the  friends  of  their 
youth  are  recorded  for  Irving's  benefit,  while 
FitzGreene  Halleck  and  William  CuUen  Bryant 
come  in  for  pleasant  comment. 

In  the  next  letter,  Brevoort  is  seen  again  in 
his  old  capacity  as  Irving's  literary  adviser, 
having  a  hand  in  arranging  matters  in  con- 
nection with  the  publication  in  America  of  the 
Life  of  Columbus.  He  discusses  with  business 
acumen  the  most  advisable  manner  of  having 
the  book  reviewed  in  Walsh's  magazine,  and 
tells  Irving  how  a  preliminary  review  of 
Scott's  Napoleon  had  greatly  aided  the  sale  of 
Sir  Walter's  book.  While  Paulding,  Camp- 
bell, Ogden,  Renwick,  Verplanck,  Nicholson, 
and  others  of  the  friends  with  whom  we  have 
become  familiar  enter  these  pages,  there  is 
here,  for  the  first  time  in  this  correspondence, 



mention  of  an  old-time  character  whose  mem- 
ory it  is  pleasant  to  recall.  Dominick  Lynch 
was  a  wine  merchant  to  whom  New  York  is 
indebted  not  alone  for  Chateau  Margaux, 
but  for  Italian  opera.  A  man  who  brought 
pleasure  wherever  he  went,  Lynch  was  a  fore- 
most figure  in  musical  circles,  and  himself  a 
singer  and  player  of  decided  attainment. 
The  embodiment  of  gaiety,  he  held  a  position 
in  New  York  society  akin  to  that  in  London 
of  Thomas  Moore,  many  of  whose  songs  were 
composed  for  this  friend  of  Brevoort  and  of 

Here,  too,  Andrew  Jackson  makes  his  first 
appearance  among  these  manuscripts.  His 
defeat  of  Adams,  and  his  ascension  to  the 
presidency  in  1828,  were  to  work  many  changes 
in  the  fortunes  of  Irving  and  of  many  of  his 

The  success  of  the  Life  of  Columbus,  the 
enthusiastic  comments  of  Chancellor  Kent, 
Fitz -Greene  Halleck,  and  others  whose  good 



opinion  must  have  been  flattering  to  Irving, 
are  among  the  topics  of  Brevoort's  next  letter, 
where  a  recountal  of  the  excellent  arrange- 
ments made  by  Ebenezer  Irving  and  Brevoort 
in  increasing  the  circulation  of  all  of  Irving's 
writings  is  further  evidence  of  Brevoort's 
helpfulness  towards  his  friend. — ^Announce- 
ment is  made  of  the  advent  of  another  child* 
in  the  Brevoort  family,  which  had  already 
shown  itself  more  prolific  than  the  head  of  the 
house  had  expected.  Brevoort  gives  the  news 
with  that  touch  of  humor  which  often  sparkles 
from  his  lines:  "You  see  my  dear  fellow  that 
my  works  are  nearly  as  numerous  as  yours; 
whether  they  will  live  as  long  &  be  as  kindly 
treated  by  the  world  is  rather  questionable." 
In  the  following  March,  Irving's  writings  on 
Spanish  subjects  come  in  for  further  discus- 

'  Constance  Irving  Brevoort.  Her  son,  M''-  Robert  Sedgwick, 
married  his  cousin,  the  granddaughter  of  Henry  Brevoort's  only 
sister,  Margaret  Brevoort  Renwick.  It  is  to  this  M"-  Sedgwick  thai 
the  editor  is  under  obligations  for  many  courtesies  in  connection 
with  the  present  publication. 



sion,  and  many  social  topics  are  broached, 
including  the  "nvimerous  masquerades  which 
now  infest  this  crack-brained  city."  Jack 
Nicholson  (to  whose  friendly  intervention 
Irving  owed  his  first  appointment  in  the  diplo- 
matic service)  and  Paulding  are  written  of 
most  entertainingly,  though  there  is  a  touch  of 
regret  where  the  latest  works  of  Irving's  old 
collaborator  are  characterized  as  those  of  "a 
mind  that  seems  to  have  stood  still  whilst  all 
the  world  has  been  advancing  in  knowledge. " 
Andrew  Jackson,  now  in  the  presidential  chair, 
"seems  determined  to  provide  for  those  who 
have  bawled  loudest  in  his  praise." 

The  next  month  finds  Brevoort  going  into 
careful  detail  regarding  the  steps  that  had 
been  taken  to  assure  the  successful  disposal  in 
America  of  Irving's  writings,  especially  the 
Life  of  Columbus  and  the  Conquest  of  Granada; 
and  Brevoort  suggests  further  subjects  of  early 
discovery  and  conquest  as  themes  for  Irving's 
pen. — A  line  of  political  news  catches  the  eye: 


"  Mr.  McLane  of  Delaware  is  appointed  envoy 
to  the  court  of  St.  James. "  It  was  this  diplo- 
mat who  was  so  soon  to  become  Irving's  chief, 
and  whose  duties  Irving  later  assumed  as 
Charg6  d'Aflfaires  at  London. 

The  offer  of  an  appointment  as  Secretary 
of  the  Legation  in  London  is  announced  to 
Irving  by  Brevoort  in  his  letter  of  May  31^*, 
1829,  an  offer  made  by  the  Secretary  of  State, 
Martin  Van  Buren,  without  consulting  Presi- 
dent Jackson.  He,  of  course,  gladly  confirmed 
the  appointment  after  Irving  had  expressed 
his  willingness  to  accept, — an  acceptance  no 
doubt  influenced  by  Brevoort's  emphatic 
advice  in  that  direction. 

The  next  missive  belongs  to  this  same  year, 
a  letter  introducing  Samuel  F.  B.  Morse  to 
Irving.  Morse  was  then  known  only  as  one 
of  the  best  of  the  American  painters  and  the 
founder  of  the  National  Academy  of  Design ; 
while  it  is  for  a  far  different  reason  that  poster- 
ity preserves  his  memory.— Qolumbia  College 


affairs  in  connection  with  the  election  of  a 
new  president  are  made  the  subject  of  an 
amusing  paragraph  in  which  are  spoken  of  as 
favorable  the  chances  of  William  Duer,  who 
"with  a  wife  and  ten  children  wants  the 

His  own  large  family  was  one  of  the  reasons 
which  led  Brevoort  to  determine  in  1830  to 
revisit  Europe.  He  desired  to  afford  his  wife 
an  opportunity  to  "escape  from  the  thraldom 
of  the  nursery,"  and  he  wished  his  elder  chil- 
dren to  have  the  benefit  of  education  abroad. 
So  in  March  he  writes  to  Irving  of  his  ap- 
proaching departure  and  speaks  of  his  grati- 
fication at  so  soon  "taking  you  and  your 
brother  Peter  by  the  hand." 

Brevoort  and  his  party  arrived  in  France  in 
June,  but  it  was  not  until  August  that  Irving, 
who  was  immersed  in  his  duties  as  Secretary  of 
the  Legation,  could  leave  London  to  meet  his 
friend  at  Paris.  In  the  interval  he  receives 
two  letters  from  Brevoort,   giving  news  of 



what  is  happening  to  him  and  his  family  in 

the  French  metropolis,  and  in  one  of  them 

commenting  on  the  distasteful  phases  of  that 

official  life  which  was  so  at  variance  with 

Irving's  inclinations  and  temperament.    After 

Irving's   return  from   Paris,   his   chief,    Mr. 

McLane,  left  him  in  charge  of  the  legation  in 

order  to  take  his  own  vacation  in  Paris,  a 

visit  that  is  noted  by  Brevoort  in  the  letter  of 

September  25*,  1830.     It  was  while  McLane 

was  there  that  he  received  a  communication 

in  which   Irving  discusses   the   qualities   of 

Talleyrand  who  had  recently  been  appointed 

as  Minister  to  England  by  Louis  Philippe. 

Irving  deprecates  the  Talleyrand  policy, — one, 

as  he  says,  "not  stiited  to  a  free  cotintry  and 

a  frank  and  poptdar  government";  and  he 

adds — a  characteristic  sentence — "I  question 

the  greatness  of  any  political  talent  that  is  not 

based  on  integrity. " 

Matters  relating  to  the  Revolution  of  1830 

find  their  way  into  the  next  Paris  letter  from 



Brevoort,  where  he  records  an  interview  in 
which  the  Citizen  King  tries  to  propitiate, 
with  the  title  of  Honorary  Commander  in 
Chief,  the  old  General  Lafayette  who  had  been 
deprived  of  his  command  of  the  National 
Guard. — "How  would  your  Majesty  be 
pleased  with  the  title  of  Honorary  King  of  the 
French?"  answers  Lafayette. 

Brevoort's  series  of  Paris  letters  continues 
in  March,  1831 ;  and  again  he  takes  up  affairs 
of  France,  the  feebleness  of  its  government, 
the  depressed  state  of  its  industry  and  com- 
merce. From  these  he  passes  to  Polish  and 
Italian  questions,  and  then  to  the  Reform  Bill 
in  England,  contrasting  the  orators  of  those 
days  with  Burke,  Fox,  and  Pitt.  In  this  por- 
tion of  the  letter  two  names  arrest  the  atten- 
tion as  those  of  English  statesmen  who  are 
entitled  to  American  gratitude.  There  'would 
probably  have  been  no  War  of  1812  if  the 
views  of  Brougham  and  Alexander  Baring 
could  have  determined  events.     Both  these 



men  deprecated  hostilities  towards  American 
commerce,  and  the  latter's  Inquiry  into  the 
Causes  and  Consequences  of  the  Orders  in 
Council  is  a  volume  apposite  to-day.  Its 
author  (who,  in  Brevoort's  letter,  figures 
merely  as  "Mr.  Baring")  is  better  known  to 
Americans  under  his  later  title  of  Lord  Ash- 
burton,  a  name  that  history  has  affixed  to  the 
Treaty  of  1842  whereby  Alexander  Baring, 
then  Minister  to  the  United  States,  arranged 
with  Daniel  Webster  for  the  settlement  of 
the  dangerous  boundary  disputes. 

In  the  spring  of  183 1  Brevoort  goes  to  Italy, 
and  upon  his  return  to  Paris  writes  to  Irving 
of  this  visit,  and  of  his  plans  for  an  early  tour 
through  Switzerland  and  the  Rhine  cotmtries. 
Brevoort's  ItaHan  trip  was  made  easier  for 
him,  as  far  as  expenses  were  concerned, 
through  his  being  preceded  by  the  Mar- 
chioness of  Conyngham,  "who  established  a 
tariff  in  the  inns  very  advantageous  to  my 
purse."     Brevoort's  sentence  arouses  reflec- 



tions  concerning  the  wheel  of  Fortune  when 
we  pause  to  consider  who  this  "ready  reck- 
oner," this  economic  traveler,  had  been.  Dur- 
ing the  reign  of  George  IV.  her  influence  over 
the  King  was  so  great  that  not  only  did  she  use 
the  King's  horses,  and  have  the  dinners  for  her 
entertainments  prepared  in  the  royal  kitchens ; 
the  splendid  Crown  Sapphires  were  worn  by 
this  then  powerful  lady.  Her  husband  was 
Member  of  the  Privy  Council  and  Lord  Stew- 
ard of  the  Household,  but  with  the  death  of 
George  IV.  their  fortunes  began  to  wane. 

A  year  had  passed  by  since  the  accession  of 
William  to  the  throne  of  England,  and  Irving 
was  now  in  charge  of  the  American  legation  at 
the  Court  of  St.  James,  McLane  being  on  the 
eve  of  resigning  his  office  of  Minister  to  become 
Secretary  of  the  Treasury  under  Andrew 
Jackson.  This  appointment,  to  which  Bre- 
voort  alludes,  was  due  to  the  desire  of  Van 
Buren,  Jackson's  Secretary  of  State,  to  have 
the  English  mission  for  himself;  and  it  remains 



one  of  the  curious  events  of  our  political 
history  that  the  Senate's  refusal  to, confirm 
Jackson's  appointment  of  Van  Buren  so  aug- 
mented the  latter' s  popularity  that  in  1832 
he  was  chosen  for  the  vice-presidency,  and  four 
years  later  nominated  for  the  presidency, 
defeating,  among  other  competitors,  the  great 
Daniel  Webster,  who  had  been  among  the 
Senators  opposing  Van  Buren 's  appointment 
at  London. 

Affairs  of  French  and  American  interest 
occupy  Brevoort's  next  letter,  of  July,  1831. 
He  gives  Irving  the  essential  points  of  the 
Treaty  of  Indemnity  negotiated  on  behalf  of 
the  United  States,  largely  through  the  instru- 
mentality of  the  American  Minister  William 
C.  Rives,  a  treaty  which  adjusted  the  difEer- 
ences  that  began  when  the  conflict  between 
Napoleon  and  Great  Britain  led,  as  far  back 
as  1806,  to  the  series  of  Orders  and  Decrees 
(by  Napoleon  at  Berlin  and  Milan)  so  inimical 
to  American  commerce.     Gallatin  and  Lafay- 



ette  figtire  in  this  portion  of  Brevoort's 
lengthy  epistle,  which  concludes,  however, 
with  matters  relating  to  art.  Brevoort  has 
acquired  a  painting  that  he  believes  is  as- 
suredly by  RafEaelle,  and  that  he  would  like 
to  have  Irving's  friend,  the  painter  Newton, 
pass  upon. 

In  his  next  letter,  after  writing  concerning 
books,  the  education  of  his  children,  and  his 
constematipn  at  the  rejection  of  Van  Buren,  he 
proceeds  to  give  a  vastly  amusing  recital  of  the 
sayings  and  doings  of  a  curious  character  by 
the  name  of  Carr,  the  American  Consul  at  the 
Court  of  Monaco.  Brevoort  speaks  of  him 
as  a  "tall,  gaunt,  Randolph -looking  figure," 
Randolph  at  that  time  being  the  United  States 
Minister  to  Russia,  probably  the  most  gro- 
tesque and  eccentric  individual  who  ever  held 
a  high  ofHce  in  American  diplomacy. — De- 
lightful must  have  been  the  conversations  on 
art  matters  between  Brevoort  and  Carr,  the 
latter  having  considered  the  purchase  of  two 



Venuses  by  Titian  for  1400  francs:  "Perhaps 
they  were  copies  but  they  were  just  as  good  as 

In  May,  1832,  the  packet  ship  Havre  (which 
had  carried  Brevoort  to  Europe)  arrived  in  the 
harbor  of  New  York,  and  Philip  Hone  records 
in  his  Diary:  "Among  the  passengers  is  otir 
distinguished  countryman  and  my  old  friend, 
Washington  Irving,  who  visits  his  native 
coTintry  after  an  absence  of  seventeen  years. 
I  called  to  see  him  this  morning  at  his  brother's 
Ebenezer  Irving.  He  has  got  very  fat  since 
I  saw  him  in  England  in  1821,  looks  exceed- 
ingly well  and  is  deh'ghted  to  be  once  more  in 
his  native  city.  I  passed  half  an  hour  with 
him  very  pleasantly.  He  talked  a  great  deal 
and  is  in  high  spirits,  a  thing  not  usual  with  him 
except  when  under  excitement  as  he  is  at  this 
moment."  It  is  accordingly  with  words  of 
congratulation  upon  Irving's  arrival  in  his 
native  land,  and  the  warmth  of  reception 
accorded  to  him  by  his  fellow  citizens,  that 



Brevoort's  letter  of  July  28*11, 1 832,  begins.  He 
adverts  in  a  pleasant,  teasing  way  to  Irving's 
reluctance  towards  accepting  public  testi- 
monials of  regard,  but  is  fully  aware  (again  to 
quote  Hone)  that  "the  return  of  Geoffrey 
Crayon  has  made  old  times  and  associations  of 
early  life  the  leading  topics  of  conversatioiT 
among  his  friends."  He  then  proceeds  to 
outline  for  Irving,  who  was  planning  American 
travels  with  Newton,  a  tour  that  should  in- 
clude many  of  the  scenes  of  Brevoort's  own 
early  days,  and  suggests  Irving's  "setting  off 
from  Montreal  in  a  bark  canoe  with  a  dozen 
sturdy  Canadian  voyageurs  up  the  Utawa  or 
Grand  River  to  the  grand  portage  by  Lakes 
Huron  and  Superior."  Thus  are  we  brought 
back  to  places  described  by  Brevoort  a  score 
of  years  earlier. — In  this  same  missive  Bre- 
voort announces  the  birth  of  his  eighth  child,' 
an  event  not  without  unusual  disquietude,  as 

'  Edith  Brevoort,  the  mother  of  M'-  Gremiille  Kane,  whose  gener- 
ous loan  of  the  Brevoort  papers  has  made  possible  these  volumes. 



cholera,  then  rampant  in  Paris,  had  driven 
the  family  to  Fontainebleau,  where  is  dated 
this  letter,  in  which  figure  Paulding,  Kemble, 
and,  indeed,  six  of  the  "nine  worthies"  who 
still  were,  as  Brevoort  has  it,  "trusty  and  well 
beloved  cronies. " 

Irving  has  returned  from  his  Western  tour 
by  the  time  that  Brevoort's  final  letter  from 
Paris  arrives.  Its  first  pages  are  given  to 
references  to  Pike's  description  of  Hfe  on  the 
prairies,  Mrs.  TroUope's  book  of  monu- 
mental misinformation  concerning  America, 
and  Paulding's  Westward  Ho, — volumes 
which  led  Brevoort>  to  say  that  if  he  himself 
were  not  so  averse  to  publicity  he  "might  be 
tempted  by  the  present  curiosity  of  the  public 
to  ransack  my  mind  for  adventures  and  scenes 
in  America, "  and  thus  recalling  to  us  his  early 
conversations  with  Walter  Scott.  There  is 
mention  also  of  Miss  Martineau's  Illustrations 
of  Political  Economy,  the  lengthiest  work  of 
that  prolific  writer,  whose  services  were  called 



into  requisition  by  the  Reform  politicians  of 
her  time,  and  whose  influence  in  many  fields 
was  so  wide-spread.  The  Dr.  Bowring  whose 
name  Brevoort  here  introduces  was  the 
friend  and  biographer  of  Jeremy  Bentham, 
and  the  first  Englishman  to  be  personally 
received  by  Louis  Philippe  after  the  British 
Government's  recognition  of  the  new  French 

But  it  is  from  allusions  to  American  politics 
that  Brevoort's  letter  gains  its  most  striking 
significance.  For  here,  more  than  quarter  of  a 
century  before  the  beginning  of  the  Civil  War, 
we  find  discussed  the  questions  of  Slavery 
and  of  the  disaffection  of  the  Southern  States. 
Ever  since  Jackson's  famous  toast: — "Our 
Federal  Union — ^it  must  be  preserved,"  had 
been  met,  at  a  public  dinner  commemorating 
the  birthday  of  Jefferson,  by  Calhoun's  reply : 
"Liberty,  dearer  than  the  Union,"  the  rift 
had  grown  wider  and  wider  imtil,  in  Novem- 
ber,  1832,  South   Carolina  had  taken  upon 



herself  to  declare  as  nuU  and  void  the  tariffs 
of  that  year  and  of  1828.  The  Ordinance  of 
Nullification  was  to  go  into  effect  the  first  of 
the  following  February,  and  war  seemed  in- 
evitable; but  Jackson's  virile  proclamation  of 
the  16*''  of  December,  (of  which  Brevoort 
writes  with  such  admiration,)  led  the  Nulli- 
fiers  to  abandon  their  plan,  and  shortly  there- 
after Clay's  Compromise  Bill  staved  off  the 
final  solution  of  our  cotmtry's  severest  prob- 
lem. Brevoort's  letter  was  written  when  the 
situation  was  at  its  worst,  midway  between 
the  date  of  Jackson's  proclamation  and  the 
date  set  for  South  Carolina's  virtual  secession. 
"You  have  no  idea,"  he  writes  to  Irving,  "of 
the  exultation  of  the  friends  of  strong  govern- 
ment over  the  impending  difficulties  on  this 
side  of  the  water.  The  disgraceful  elopement 
of  one  of  the  sisters  of  our  family  they  say 
casts  a  deep  stain  upon  our  house.  The 
Carlists  &c  insist  upon  it  that  nothing  but  a 
legitimate  king  will  restore  us  to  order  and 



prosperity.  Johnny  Bull  is  full  of  brotheriy 
sympathy,  he  perceives  new  markets  for  his 
wares.  The  cause  of  freedom  is  betrayed  and 
dishonoured. "  In  no  other  of  his  letters  does 
Brevoort  write  with  as  much  fire  and  ardor  as 
he  does  in  his  discussion  of  secession ;  but,  even 
so,  he  does  not  end  without  paragraphs  in  a 
lighter  vein,  where  he  informs  Irving  of  a  new 
patent  machine  for  fattening  fowls  which 
"become  as  corpulent  and  fat  as  the  late 
George  IV.  of  exclusive  memory";  while  of 
John  Jacob  Astor  he  writes  that  "the  old  Gent 
finds  me  vastly  entertaining,  if  one  may  judge 
from  the  frequency  of  his  visits. " 

The  spring  of  the  year  1834  sees  Brevoort 
again  in  America ;  and  how  frequently  he  and 
Irving  were  in  one  another's  company  is  made 
evident  in  Hone's  Diary,  where,  in  giving  the 
names  of  guests  at  numerous  dinners  and  othei" 
social  meetings,  that  old-time  friend  and  boy- 
hood neighbor  of  Irving's  records  almost 
invariably    in    conjunction     the    names    of 



Irving  and  Brevoort.  Their  comparative  prox- 
imity rendered  lengthy  communication  un- 
necessary, but  we  have  here  five  letters  and 
notes  from  Brevoort,  all  of  them  addressed  to 
Irving  at  Tarrytown.  In  the  first  of  these, 
written  in  1834,  when  Brevoort  was  staying 
at  the  honae  of  his  brother-in-law,  Professor 
Renwick,  on  the  College  Green,  there  is 
pathetic  news  of  the  death  of  the  two  young 
children  of  that  Colonel  Aspinwall  who  ren- 
dered Irving  many  services  in  reference  to 
business  arrangements  for  his  works.  In  giv- 
ing the  tidings  of  the  death  of  these  children, 
Brevoort  writes  of  the  kindness  of  James  Feni- 
more  Cooper,  "reaUy  a  good  man,"  and  "the 
chief  consolation  of  the  AspinwaUs"  in  their 

The  foremost  item  regarding  New  York 
social  events  which  Brevoort  forwards  to  his 
friend  at  Tarrytown  concerns  Trelawney,  then 
the  literary  lion  of  the  town.  Trelawney  is 
remembered  through  his  intimacy  with  Shelley 



and  Byron,  and  his  escape,  by  mere  chance, 
from  sharing  the  former's  fate  on  that  memor- 
able day  when  the  Mediterranean  leaped  into 
ill-starred  fame.  It  was  he  who  had  snatched 
from  the  flames  the  heart  of  Shelley,  an  act  in 
itself  a  poem.  The  man  who  had  thus  been 
caught  in  the  glamor  of  Byron  and  Shelley 
possessed,  in  addition  to  literary  talents, 
striking  physical  beauty — ("the  beau  ideal  of 
his  friend  Byron's  Corsair,"  Brevoort  calls 
him,) — and  so  it  is  not  surprising  that  during 
his  American  travels  in  1833 — 1835  he  could 
hold  the  wondering  attention  of  all  whom  he 
met,  an  attention  further  riveted  by  such 
characteristic  feats  as  swimming  the  Niagara 
between  the  rapids  and  the  falls,  and,  in  the 
same  place,  holding  Fanny  Kemble  in  his  arms 
to  afford  her  a  better  view  of  those  far-famed 

The  year  1840  yields  a  brief  note  from  Bre- 
voort to  Irving — a  few  lines  of  invitation  to  a 
dinner  where  the  guest  of  honor  was  Mr.  Rives, 



the  American  Minister  to  Paris  who  figures  in 
earlier  letters. 

In  1 841  another  brief  note  is  sent  to  Irving, 
in  which  Brevoort  tirges  a  visit  both  to  himself 
and  to  their  old  friend  Gouvemeior  Kemble  in 
the  Highlands;  whereupon  Irving  goes  first 
to  Kenxble's,  in  the  company  of  the  American 
artist  William  A.  West,  (remembered  mainly 
for  his  excellent  portrait  of  B3rron,)  and  then 
to  Brevoort's,  residing  a  few  miles  away  in  the 
old  Beverly  House,  which  has  a  place  in  the 
record  of  Benedict  Arnold's  conspiracy. 
Thence,  in  the  company  of  Philip  Hone  and 
Brevoort,  Irving  makes  a  tour  along  the 
Delaware  and  Hudson  Canal,  penetrating 
into  some  of  the  loveliest  regions  of  New 
York  and  Pennsylvania,  and  finding,  as  he 
writes  to  his  sister,  Mrs.  Van  Wart,  "some 
of  the  most  enchanting  scenes  I  have  be- 
held since  my  return  to  the  United  States." 
The  fatigues,  however,  of  these  travels  caused 
an  illness  which  reached  its  height  towards 



the  end  of  August,  in  dangerous  days  of 

Irving's  recovery  is  made  the  subject  of  the 
opening  paragraph  of  Brevoort's  next  letter, 
written  August  so**",  1841 ;  but  one  must  ques- 
tion the  judiciousness  of  Brevoort's  enclosure 
to  his  convalescent  friend  of  the  verses  which 
one  of  Irving's  admirers  had  begged  Brevoort 
to  transmit. 

In  the  same  letter  is  recorded  the  death  of 
Brevoort's  aged  father,  whose  "long  gun" 
Brevoort  now  offers  to  Irving  "in  the  name  of 
the  family,  hoping  that  you  may  live  to  enjoy 
its  possession  as  long,  and  as  happily,  as  did 
its  late  worthy  owner."  In  Hone's  Diary 
the  only  entry  for  August  26**"  reads,  "Died 
this  day  at  the  great  age  of  94,  Mr.  Henry 
Brevoort.  He  lived  all  his  life  on  his  farm, 
now  in  Broadway,  a  short  distance  above  my 
house,  which  cost  him  a  few  hundred  dollars 
and  is  now  worth  to  his  heirs  a  half  million." 

In  the  next  note,  Irving  is  asked  to  come 



to  the  Surrogate's  office  to  prove  the  signa- 
ture of  the  old  gentleman's  will. 

These  brief  communications  give  place  to 
lengthier  letters,  when,  after  Irving's  appoint- 
ment as  Minister  at  Madrid,  the  two  friends 
were  again  on  different  continents.  With 
Irving  has  gone  as  attachd  of  legation  Bre- 
voort's  son  Carson,  and  Irving's  kindness  to 
him  is  made  the  topic  of  the  father's  gratitude 
in  the  opening  pages  of  Brevoort's  letter  of 
December,  1842,  In  less  happy  vein,  however, 
the  letter  continues.  It  was  a  period  of  com- 
mercial distress  in  America,  with  confidence 
impaired  by  the  Bankrupt  Law,  and  a  time 
when  all  men  of  means  found  their  investments 
vastly  depreciated.  Brevoort  relieves  his 
mind  by  confiding  some  of  his  financial 
troubles  to  Irving,  but  adds,  "  I  have  no  cause 
to  complain;  I  bear  the  weight  of  my  three 
score  winters  and  summers  lightly  and  bravely 
and  I  am  surrounded  by  a  family  of  intelli- 
gence and  love  such  as  falls  to  [the]  lot  of  few 



men,  and  for  which  I  am  heartily  grateful  to 
God. " — Here,  too,  is  the  record  of  some  shrewd 
intellectual  conversation  between  John  Jacob 
Astor  and  his  friend  Joseph  Green  Cogswell, 
the  first  Superintendent  of  the  Astor  Library, 
Both  of  these  men  played  important  parts  in 
connection  with  Irving's  writings,  Astor  in  a 
positive  way  in  leading  Irving  to  write  Astoria; 
and  Cogswell  in  prompting  that  chivalrous 
action  of  Irving's  when  he  relinquished  to 
Prescott  the  theme  of  the  Conquest  of  Mexico. 
Irving  had  already  commenced  work  on  the 
same  subject,  but  destroyed  his  manuscript 
after  his  generous  abandonment  in  favor  of 

In  addition  to  news  of  Cogswell  and  Astor, 
the  "group  of  old  cronies" — ^Jack  Nicholson, 
Kemble,  Paulding — ^pass  in  review,  with  men- 
tion also  of  Daniel  Webster  and  Moses  Grin- 
nell  (who  had  married  Irving's  niece),  one  of 
New  York's  merchant  princes,  Collector  of  the 
Port,  President  of  the  Chamber  of  Commerce, 



and  later  a  member  of  the  original  commission 
that  provided  Central  Park  to  our  city.  But 
the  most  interesting  personage  to  figure  in 
these  lines  is  Charles  Dickens,  whose  American 
Notes  calls  forth  iatelligent  comment  from 
Brevoort.  Dickens  had  during  his  stay  in  the 
United  States  become  deeply  attached  to  Ir- 
ving, and  in  his  last  letter  to  him,  before  the 
departure  for  Spain,  had  written:  "Wherever 
you  go,  God  bless  you!  What  pleasure  I  have 
had  in  seeing  and  talking  with  you  I  will  not 
attempt  to  say.  I  shall  never  forget  it  as 
long  as  I  live";  and  he  asks  Irving  to  write  to 
him  "if  you  have  leisure  under  its  svinny  skies 
to  think  of  a  man  who  loves  you  and  holds 
commtinication  with  your  spirit  oftener,  per- 
haps, than  any  other  person  alive. " 

Another  letter,  and  we  come  to  the  end  of 
the  Brevoort  manuscripts.  It  is  dated  Oc- 
tober 1 8*^,  1843.  It  would  be  difficult  to  con- 
ceive a  missive  which  cotild  more  felicitously 
complete  this  correspondence  that  had  pro- 



gressed  since  the  time  when  both  Brevoort 
and  Irving  were  in  their  twenties.  One  could 
aknost  imagine  Brevoort  a  boy  again,  with 
such  zest  does  he  confide  to  his  life-long  friend 
all  the  little  gossip  of  their  circle  of  acquaint- 
ances, the  amusing  episodes  in  which  members 
of  the  Astor  family  figure,  the  scandal  among 
neighbors,  and  all  the  talk  of  the  town. 
Literature  enters  with  Bancroft,  Prescott,  and 
Cooper;  art  with  Weir  and  AUston;  politics 
with  Webster  and  Clay,  and  Martin  Van 
Buren,  that  warm  friend  of  Irving  and  Pauld- 
ing, who,  his  presidency  over,  has  now  retired 
to  "Lindenwald"  (which  Brevoort  anglicizes 
as  "  Lindenwood ") — the  lovely  home  near 
Kinderhook,  to  which  Irving  had  only  recently 
accompanied  him.  Drama  and  music  also 
are  represented  with  mention  of  Macready  and 
Conti.  The  epistle  is  a  very  mine  of  news  to 
Brevoort's  absent  friend,  soon  to  be  immersed 
in  the  difficulties  of  his  Spanish  mission.  It  is 
small  wonder  that  Irving,  in  his  reply,  should 



have  begtin  with  appreciation  of  Brevoort's 
"most  kind  and  welcome  letter";  but  the 
wonder  remains  for  us  that  these  two  men, 
now  both  past  sixty,  could,  despite  the  far 
different  lines  along  which  their  lives  ran,  the 
great  distances  which  for  so  many  years 
separated  them,  have  thus  cordially  kept 
up  their  relationship  in  the  same  spirit  of 
affection  that  animated  them  in  the  early  days 
when  they  were  looked  upon  as  the  merriest 
of  young  fellows  in  the  little  city  of  New 

George  S.  Hellman. 

New  York:  Jvme,  1916. 




Publishers'  Note v 

Introduction       ......      ix 

I. — New  York,  January  19th,  i8i I   ...         3 

Comment  on  Irving' s  travels — The  firstnumher  of  Walsh's 
Review — Verplanck,  Van  Ness,  and  Clinton — Mrs.  Ram- 
sey's boarding  house — Mrs.  Renwick  and  Mrs.  Hoffman. 

II. — New  York,  February  14th,  181 1        .  .       11 

Reflections  on  political  partisanship — Peter  Kemhle — 
Gossip  concerning  girl  friends — Cooke's  dinner  to  the  actors 
— Theatrical  news — John  Howard  Payne. 

III. — Mackinac,  June  26th,  181 1      ...       20 

The  canoe  trip  from  Montreal — Voyage  to  Lake  Superior 
and  Sault  St.  Marie. 

IV. — Mackinac,  June  28th,  181 1      ...       26 

The  Indian  Nations — Attitude  of  the  American  Govern- 
ment— Anecdote  of  a  chief — Brevoort's  desire  to  interest  Irving 
and  Paulding  in  Indian  affairs — Popularity  of  "Knicker- 
bocker's History  of  New  York. " 

V. — Mackinac,  July  14th,  181 1        ...       36 

Charms  of  Mackinac — Indian  traders — The  magic  of 
home — Indian  mission  to  President  Madison — Anecdote  of 
the  bear. 





VI. — Mackinac,  July  29th,  181 1       .         .         .       44 

Brevoort's  reflections  concerning  himself — Beginnings  of 
Indian  warfare — Anecdote  of  Madame  Deffand. 

VII. — Paris,  April  14th,  1812  ...      49 

The  ocean  voyage — Journey  through  Normandy — 
Palace  of  the  Empress  Josephine — Observations  on  the  French 
peasantry — Napoleon  and  his  plans — News  of  an  impostor — 
Messages  to  many  New  York  friends. 

VIII. — Paris,  May  12th,  1812  •         •         •       59 

Minister  Barlow  and  Captain  Whetten — Brevoort  studies 
French  and  roams  about  Paris — Beauties  of  Versailles — 
Napoleon  joins  the  Grand  Army — Description  of  the  Em- 
peror and  Empress — Behavior  of  Mr.  Barlow — Irving' s  boohs 
desired  for  presentation  to  Madame  D'Arhlay. 

IX. — Edinburgh,  December  9th,  1812       .         .       64 

Peter  Irving — The  "Independent  Columbian  Review" — 
Francis  Jeffrey  and  his  views  on  America — The  Royal  Society 
of  Edinburgh — Scientific  discussions — Prof.  Playfair — • 
Portrait  of  Mrs.  Renwick  by  Jarvis. 

X. — Edinburgh,  March  ist,  1813     ...       70 

Home  recollections — The  old  table  on  which  Irving  used 
to  snore — The  Van  Warts — A  dinner  at  Walter  Scott's — 
Kemble's  comments  on  Shakespeare — Mrs.  Siddons,  Talma, 
Garrick,  and  other  actors — Scott  as  a  dramatist — The  war 
of  i8i2—The  "Life  of  Cooke"—  William  Roscoe—The 
recovery  of  Mrs.  Hoffman,  Matilda's  mother — Description  of 
Scott  and  of  Jeffrey— "The  Bridal  of  Triermain" — Bre- 
voort's admiration  for  Prof.  Playfair — Chemical  discoveries. 

XI. — London,  June  24th,  1813         ...       91 

Brevoort  meets  Campbell,  Joanna  Baillie,  Maria  Edge- 
worth,  and  other  celebrities — Mrs.  Siddons'  sublime  acting — 
Liston  in  a  travesty  of  Hamlet — Madame  D'Arblay,  Madame 
__  Ixxvi 


de  Stael,  and  Miss  Edgeworth  described — Herschell  and 
Mackintosh — Brevoort  introduces  Francis  Jeffrey  and  Am- 
bassador de  Kantzow  to  Irving,  Astor,  etc. — Walter  Scott 
reads  "Knickerbocker's  History"  and  writes  to  Brevoort  in 
praise  of  it — John  Howard  Payne  as  "Romeo. " 

XII.— New  York,  October  2d,  1818  .  .     loi 

An  episode  of  calumny — Duel  between  Perry  and  Heath 
— James  K.  Paulding's  new  poem — Family  news — Vice- 
President  Tompkins  hopes  for  Irving' s  return — Local  gossip 
— Gouverneur  Kemble  and  his  foundry. 

XIII. — ^Bloomingdale,  September  9th,  1819       .     109 

Brevoort' s  arrangements  concerning  the  "Sketch  Book" 
— The  last  numbers  of  Paulding's  "Salmagundi" — William 
Irving — Brevoort' s  first  child,  James  Carson — Yellow 
fever  in  New  York. 

XIV. — New  York,  November  9th,  1819   .         .116 

The  "Sketch  Book" — Ebenezer  Irving — The  criticism  in 
the  "Evening  Post" — The  "North  American  Review." 

XV.— New  York,  April  — ,  1820      .         .         .121 

Brevoort' s  second  child,  William  Augustus — His  sister 
Margaret  and  her  husband  James  Renwick — Reverses  of  for- 
tune— The  "Legend  of  Sleepy  Hollow"— Writings  of  Pauld- 
ing and  Verplanck — Contest  between  Clinton  and  Tompkins 
— Dud  of  Decatur  and  Barron — News  of  Irving's  brother 

XVI.— New  York,  November  — ,  1820     .         .     128 

Irving's  steamboat  enterprise — Mrs.  Brevoort  desires 
Irving  to  send  music — Renwick  appointed  to  a  professor- 
ship at  Columbia  College. 



XVII. — New  York,  January  8th,  1821      .         .     132 

News  of  Columbia  College — Rivalry  of  the  actors  Kean 
and  Cooper — Capt.  Nicholson,  Beekman  and  Astor — Liv- 
ingston's New  Year's  party — Public  dinner  to  Kean — The 
" Sketch  Book" — Family  affairs. 

XVIII.— New  York,  May  7th,  1821  .         .     137 

Irving's  motives  for  remaining  abroad — Brevoort's  with- 
drawal from  mercantile  affairs — Thomas  Moore  and  George 
Canning — Thomas  A.  Cooper  and  theatrical  matters — 
Gossip  of  New  York  society — Newton's  portrait  of  Irving 
exhibited  at  the  Academy  of  Fine  Arts. 

XIX. — New  York,  June  15th,  1821.         .         .     143 

Brevoort  advances  funds  to  Irving — The  Steam  Boat 
enterprise — Irving's  brothers,  William,  Ebenezer,  and  John 
— Kean's  departure  for  America — The  "  New  Sketch  Book. " 

XX. — New  York,  October  9th,  1821         .         .     147 

Coronation  of  George  IV. — Brevoort  suggests  that  Irving 
should  use  American  material  for  a  work  of  fiction — The 
"Sketch  Book"  and  "Knickerbocker's  History" — Tragic 
death  of  Miss  Delafield — The  Pauldings,  Kembles,  Rhine- 
landers,  &c. — Jack  Nicholson's  twentieth  love  affair. 

XXI. — New  York,  January  ist,  1827       .         ,     152 

Renewal  of  correspondence  between  Irving  and  Brevoort 
— Intimate  reflections — Family  news — European  and  Ameri- 
can reviews — Philip  Hone — Nicholson's  man-of-war  in  the 
Mediterranean — Henry  Clay — Kemble,  Verplanck,  and 
James  Fenimore  Cooper — Witticisms  of  Major  Fairlie — 
Death  of  Jefferson  and  Adams — Charles  Carroll  of  Carroll- 
ton — News  of  Mary  Fairlie  (Mrs.  Thomas  A.  Cooper) — 
Brevoort's  father  comes ' '  to  the  City ' '  once  in  four  years  from 
his  farm  at  nth  Street — Peter  Irving  and  Edward  Everett. 



XXII. — New  York,  November  19th,  1827        .     165 

The  "Life  of  Columbus" — Brevoort  assures  Irving  of  his 
countrymen's  admiration — News  of  old  friends — Halleck  and 
Bryant — Tragic  death  ofT.A.  'Emmet,  the  Irish  historian. 

XXIII. — New  York,  December  19th,  1827        .     170 

"The  Life  of  Columbus" — Cary  and  Murray  the  pub- 
lishers— "The  American  Quarterly  Review" — Writings  of 
James  Renwick — Scott's  "Napoleon" — Newspaper  attacks 
on  Irving — Musical  affairs — Dominick  Lynch  and  Thomas 
Moore — News  of  many  friends — Political,  dramatic,  and 
social  tidings. 

XXIV.— New  York,  May  31st,  1828        .         .     180 

Praise  from  Kent,  Jay,  Halleck,  and  others  for  the  "Life 
of  Columbus ' ' — A  rrangementsfor  Irving' s  Works — Paulding 
and  Kemble — Nicholson's  popularity  with  the  ladies — Bre- 
voort's  father  cures  the  Earl  of  Huntingdon  of  dropsy. 

XXV.— New  York,  March  30th,  1829  .185 

Irving's  Spanish  writings — Brgvoort's  delight  at  Irving's 
increasing  success — News  of  the  little  coterie  of  old  friends — 
The  neu)  president,  Andrew  Jackson. 

XXVI.— New  York,  April  30th,  1829       .         .     190 

"Abridgment  of  the  Life  of  Columbus" — Brevoort's  ar- 
rangements with  the  Carvills,  the  publishers — The  "  Conquest 
of  Granada  " — Brevoort  offers  literary  suggestions  and  finan- 
cial advice — President  Jackson  and  political  appointments. 

XXVII.— New  York,  May  31st,  1829      .         .     196 

Van  Buren  offers  Irving  the  Secretaryship  of  the  Ameri- 
can Legation  at  London — Brevoort  urges  acceptance — 
McLane,  the  American  Minister  at  the  Court  of  St.  James — 
Nicholson,  Paulding,  and  other  friends — Rives,  the  American 
Minister  to  France — Family  news. 



XXVIII. — New  York,  November  6th,  1829      .     203 

Brevoort  introduces  S.  F.  B.  Morse  to  Irving — The 
National  Academy  of  Design — Irving' s  acceptance  of  Presi- 
dent Jackson's  appointment — Elections  at  Columbia  College — 
Ebenezer  Irving  falls  from  his  horse, 

XXIX.— New  York,  March  23d,  1830      ,         .     208 

Brevoort  decides  to  revisit  Europe — Family  news — 
Moore's  "Life  of  Byron." 

XXX. — Paris,  June  17th,  1830        .         .         .     212 

Arrival  at  Paris — News  of  various  friends — Brevoort 
longs  to  see  Irving. 

XXXI.— Paris,  July  8th,  1830         .         .         .215 

A  room  in  Brevoort's  apartment  reserved  for  Irving — 
Plans  for  excursions  to  Switzerland,  etc. — The  education  of  the 
children  — England  and  France  contrasted — Ja^k  Nicholson 
at  Paris. 

XXXII. — Paris,  September  25th,  1830     .         .     219 

Brevoort's  mother-in-law,  Mrs.  Carson,  and  her  missing 
brother — The  McLanes — Political  affairs  in  France. 

XXXIII. — Paris,  January  4th,  1831  .  .     222 

Mrs.  Brooks  and  her  epic  poem — James  Fenimore 
Cooper — Messages  to  Irving  from  Brevoort's  children — 
Nicholson  and  the  French  royal  family — Madame  Malibran 
and  her  husband — Atiecdote  of  Lafayette  and  Louis  Philippe. 

XXXIV.— Paris,  March  7th,  1831   .         .         .     227 

///  health  and  recovery  of  Brevoort — Plans  of  travel 
— The  Revolution  of  1830  and  affairs  in  France,  Poland, 
and  Italy — English  politics  and  statesmen — Baring  and 



XXXV.— Paris,  June  30th,  1831      .         .         .233 

Brevoort's  Italian  journey — The  Marchioness  of  Co- 
nyngham — Irving  the  Charge  d' Affaires — McLane's  appoint- 
ment as  Secretary  of  the  Treasury  in  Jackson's  Cabinet. 

XXXVI.— Paris,  July  8th,  1831       .         .         .238 

The  Treaty  of  Indemnity — Activities  of  the  American 
Minister,  W.  C.  Rives — The  French  Government  and  the 
Louisiana  Treaty — Gallatin  and  Lafayette — Brevoort  obtains 
a  Madonna  attributed  to  Raffaelle. 

XXXVII.— Paris,  March  25th,  1832         .         .     246 

Books  and  book-sellers — Martin  Van  Buren's  rejection 
by  the  Senate — "  The  Red  Rover"  and  Walter  Scott — Consul 
Carr,  a  curious  character — Nwvs  of  the  New  York  fashionable 
world — Dominick  Lynch. 

XXXVIII.— Fontainebleau,  July  28th,  1832     .     253 

Irving' s  welcome  home  to  America — Brevoort  outlines  a 
journey  for  Irving  and  Newton — Gossip  of  friends  and 
family — The  Brevoort  children — Cholera  in  Paris  and 

XXXIX.— Paris,  January  i8th,  1833       .         .     261 

Irving's  western  tour — Writings  of  Mrs.  Trollope, 
Paulding,  and  Miss  Martineau — Andrew  Jackson's  Proclam- 
ation— Secession  and  the  slavery  question — Europe's  attitude 
towards  American  difficulties — Col.  Thorn,  Renwick,  Astor, 
and  others. 

XL. — New  York,  June  27th,  1834   .         .  268 

Death  of  the  Aspinwall  children — Kindheartedness  of 
James  Fenimore  Cooper — The  Douglas,  soiree — Trelawney 
and  Byron. 



XLI. — New  York,  November  loth,  1840  .     272 

A  dinner  at  Brevoort's — Rives  the  diplomat,  Cary  the 
publisher,  and  John  Jacob  Astor. 

XLII. — New  York,  July  ist,  1841    .         .         .     273 

Irving  and  West  are  invited  to  visit  Kemble  and  Brevoort 
at  their  homes  in  the  Highlands — Cornwall,  West  Point, 
and  Beverly. 

XLIII. — Beverly,  August  30th,  1841         .         .     275 

Irving's  illness  and  recovery  after  his  travels  with  Hone 
and  Brevoort — Death  of  old  Henry  Brevoort — His  long  gun 
presented  to  Irving — Brown's  poem  entitled  "Past  Joys." 

XLIV.— New  York,  October  i8th,  1841    .  .     282 

Irving  is  asked  to  witness  the  signature  to  old  Henry 
Brevoort's  will. 

XLV. — New  York,  December  28th,  1842  .     283 

/.  Carson  Brevoort,  Irving's  attache — Financial  depres- 
sion in  America — John  Jacob  Astor  and  his  remarks  on  life 
after  death — J.  G.  Cogswell,  Kemble,  and  Paulding — Daniel 
Webster  and  Moses  Grinnell  — Dickens  and  his  "American 

XL VI.— New  York,  October  i8th,  1843    .         .     292 

Irving  and  Carson  Brevoort — Life  on  Long  Island — 
Social  and  political  affairs  in  America — Amusing  gossip  of 
the  Astor  family — A  bit  of  scandal — Kemble,  Paulding,  and 
Martin  Van  Buren — Webster  and  Clay — Irving's  diplomatic 
achievements  in  Spain — Bancroft,  Jared  Sparks,  and  Cooper 
— News  of  artists  and  actors. 


Introductory  Notes         .....     305 



I. — Brevoort  to  his  Parents,  Marietta,  Febru- 
ary 7th,  1804         337 

Meets  General  Putnam — The  country  along  the  Ohio 
river — Family  matters. 

II. — P.   L'Herbette  to   Brevoort,   New  York, 

March  6th,  1805  .         ....     340 
John  Jacob  Astor — News  of  the  fur  trade. 

III. — Brevoort  to  John  Jacob  Astor,  Montreal, 

May  9th,  181 1 343 

Business  matters — The  Mackinac  Company — Statistics 
concerning  beavers,  otters,  raccoons,  and  other  fur-bearing 

IV. — Brevoort  to  John  Whetten,  St.  Joseph's, 

June  25th,  181 1 347 

Advice  to  his  uncle  regarding  the  fur  company — Vessels 
captured  by  the  English. 

V. — Walter    Scott    to    Brevoort,    Abbotsford, 

April  23d,  1 813 349 

Scott  thanks  Brevoort  for  "Knickerbocker's  History" — 
Praises  Irving,  whom  he  compares  to  Swift  and  Sterne — 
Hopes  to  see  more  of  Irving's  writings. 

VI. — John  Howard  Payne  to  Brevoort,  Liver- 
pool, September  12th,  1813  .         .         .     351 
Introducing  Charles  Kemble,  the  actor. 

VII. — Miss  Booth  to  Brevoort,  London,  June  2d, 

1816 352 

Washington  Irving  and  Bibby  the  actor — Marriage  of 
George  IV. — Mrs.  Siddons  and  Miss  O'Neill. 



VIII. — Ebenezer    Irving    to    Brevoort,    Long 

Branch,  September  28th,  1819    .         .     355 

The  success  of  the  "Sketch  Book" — Arrangements  re- 
garding further  numbers — Yellow  fever  in  New  York. 

IX. — Ebenezer      Irving   to   Brevoort,      Long 

Branch,  October  3d,  1819     .         .         .     358 

Ebenezer  receives  the  MS.  of  the  fourth  number  of  the 
"Sketch  Book" — Comments  on  "The  Mutability  of  Litera- 
ture, "  "  John  Bull, "  and  "  The  Legend  of  Sleepy  Hollow." 

X. — Brevoort  to  Rembrandt  Peale,  New  York, 

January  2d,  1824        ....     360 

Brevoort's  loan  to  Peale — The  portraits  of  Washington  by 
Stuart  and  Pine — A  picture  by  Raffaelle. 

XI. — Rembrandt    Peale    to    Brevoort,    Phila- 
delphia, June  13th,  1824       .  .  .     364 

Peale's  portrait  of  Washington — Trumbull  and  Sttiart — 
Peak's  large  family — His  appreciation  of  Brevoort's  assist- 

XII. — Robert  Emmet  to  Brevoort,  New  York, 

February  22nd, 1825  .  .  .     370 

A  request  for  snuff  and  literature — Puns  and  other  wit- 
ticisms— An  epidemic  of  influenza. 

XIII. — James   Hamilton   to   Brevoort,    Wash- 

irigton,  December  25th,  1825      .  .     372 

Vanderlyn  the  painter — His  recalcitrant  behavior  in  con- 
nection with  the  portrait  of  General  Jackson. 

XIV. — Charles  Carroll  of  CarroUton  to  Bre- 
voort, Baltimore,  May  24th,  1826        .     374 
Financial  affairs — The  Montreal  Bank. 



Xy. — PeterlrvingtoBrevoort,  Rouen,  1828      .     375 

Washington  Irving  at  Sevilie — The  "History  of  Colum- 
bus"— Rouen — The  Steam  Boat  Concern. 

XVI. — James  Kent  to  Brevoort,   New  York, 

September  28th,  1830        .         .         .     378 

Philip  Hone — " Disctissions  upon  the  Civil   Code" — 
The  "  Commentaries"  presented  by  the  Chancellor  to  Brevoort. 

XVII. — James  Fenimore  Cooper  to  Brevoort, 

Paris,  1831 380 

The  Marquis  de  Marbois  and  other  French  statesmen — 
Thomas  Jefferson — Cuvier  and   Villemain — Marbois'  wit- 
ticism concerning  Lafayette  and  himself. 

XVIII.— Brevoort  to  his  Father,  Fontainebleau, 

April,  1832 383 

Cholera  at  Paris — Brevoort  desires  to  purchase  some  of 
his  father's  lots — Family  affairs. 

XVIX. — Pierre  P.   Irving  to  Brevoort,   New 

York,  September  28th,  1833    .         .     389 

Irving's  nephew  returns  to  Brevoort  Walter  Scott's  letter 
concerning  "Knickerbocker's  History  of  New  York." 

XX.— Winfield  Scott  to  Brevoort,  New  York, 

October  8th, 1833       ....     390 

The  General  asks  Brevoort  to  interest  himself  in  Captain 

XXI. — George  W.  Lafayette  to  Brevoort,  Paris, 

May  23d,  1834  .         .         .         .391 

Death  of  Lafayette — Sympathy  extended  by  the  American 
Committee — Gratitude  of  the  Lafayette  family. 




XXII.— John  Trumbull  to  Brevoort,  New  York, 

September  8th,  1836         .  .  .     394 

Presents  an  engraving  of  his  famous  portrait  of  Washing- 

XXIII. — David  Austin  to  Brevoort,  New  York, 

April  24th,  1843    .  .  .  .395 

The  Vestry  of  Grace  Church  negotiates  for  its  present 
property,  then  the  site  of  the  old  Brevoort  home,  and  a  portion 
of  the  Brevoort  farm  which  at  one  time  comprised  some  go  acres 
between  4th  and  iSth,  Streets. 

XXIV. — Brevoort  to  David  Austin,  New  York, 

April  25th,  1843  .  .  .397 

On  behalf  of  his  father's  estate,  Brevoort  names  a  price, 
but  stipulates  that  the  heirs  shall  be  held  harmless  in  case  nth 
Street  should  be  opened  from  Broadway  to  the  Bowery. 



Henry  Brevoort 


Prom  the  painting  by  Rembrandt  Peale. 

(Reproduced  by  the  courtesy  of  Brevoort's  grandson, ' 
Grenville  Kane,  Esq.) 


New  York,  January  ig^^  1811. 


I  am  still  without  any  direct  intelligence 
from  you,  although  I  penned  you  a  very 
recondite  epistle  and  by  the  advice  of  good- 
man-Curl  directed  it  to  the  care  of  Mr.  Coale, 
Baltimore,  to  be  forwarded  in  case  of  absence. 

As  the  day  is  uncommonly  genial  and  my 
spirits  at  a  more  than  ordinary  elevation,  I 
cannot  possibly  start  off  without  prancing 
in  the  air  like  a  high  mettled  racer.  I  look 
upon  you  in  the  light  of  an  eastern  sovereign 
travelling  through  his  vast  dominions  & 
collecting  from  his  loveing  subjects  their  tribu- 
tary caresses,  judge  then  of  my  immeasur- 
able regret  in  missing  the  glorious  opportunity 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  I9«i  1811 

of  being  associated  with  you  in  your  pilgrim- 
age, &  thereby  sharing  a  moiety  of  attention. 
Since  my  return,  my  feeHngs  are  not  unlike 
an  adventurous  aeronaut,  who  after  having 
mounted  to  the  third  heaven,  descends  from 
his  flight  to  the  vile  mole-hill  of  his  nativity 
with  a  more  confirmed  sense  of  his  insigni- 
ficance. And  now  my  dear  boy  with  such  a 
lofty  beginning,  how  shall  I  condescend  to 
notice  the  trifles  that  surround  me  without 
shocking  both  you  and  myself  with  the 
abruptness  of  my  fall. — It  will  be  somewhat 
diminished  by  commencing  with  Mr.  Walsh's 
first  number  which  has  been  circulated  and 
pretty  generally  read ;  I  know  not  the  sentence 
of  public  opinion,  but  judging  from  my  own  I 
doubt  whether  it  will  be  so  favourable  as  his 
talents,  (unquestionably  of  the  first  order) 
deserve.  His  politics  are  tinctured  with  such 
passionate  prejudices  against  the  institutions 
of  his  own  country  that  I  should  really  lament 
that  his  opinions  gain  many   votaries. — In 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  ig^A  1811 

spite  of  Mr.  Walsh's  contximely,  the  virtue 
and  talents  of  the  present  administration  are 
very  far  from  being  contemptible;  but  whether 
they  are  or  not,  one-half  the  country  are  their 
warm  supporters,  and  I  trust  a  large  propor- 
tion of  the  remainder  have  too  much  love  of 
covintry  to  gratify  foreign  malevolence  by  such 
an  ignominious  exposure  of  their  weakness. 

I  insist  upon  it  that  many  of  these  present 
embarrassments  are  not  so  much  the  result  of 
mal-administration,  as  unavoidable  circtim- 
stances,  and  whether  our  rulers  were  federal 
or  democratic,  they  would  have  encount- 
ered the  same  hostile  jealousy  of  foreign 
nations,  and  it  is  reasonably  to  be  doubted  if 
wiser  measures  to  avoid  them  could  have 
been  successfully  adopted.  So  much  for  his 
politics.  As  to  the  literary  departments  of  his 
Journal,  the  fewness  of  original  works  &  of 
professed  authors  in  this  Country,  compels 
him  to  seek  abroad  for  works  to  criticise  and 
that  province  of  Literature  is  now  so  ably 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  19!!}  181 1 

filled  in  England,  that  it  would  be  a  work  of 
vain  supererogation  to  again  do,  what  is 
already  so  masterly  done. — The  books  selected 
for  the  present  number,  are  tmknown  to  us, 
even  after  reading  his  remarks,  for  he  does  not 
offer  anything  like  an  analysis  of  them. 

The  Letters  on  France  is  decidedly  the  most 
interesting  and  will  be  the  most  popular  part 
of  his  labours. — After  all,  I  value  not  my 
mishapen  opinion  a  pinch  of  snuff,  •  and  I 
should  be  mortified  to  see  his  fine  talents 
neglected  by  his  countrymen,  for  he  exhibits 
nevertheless  a  more  extensive  range  of 
thought  &  more  abundant  materials  expressed 
in  a  more  manly  and  correct  style  than  any 
writer  this  side  of  the  Atlantic. — 

I  understand  the  subscription  list  goes  on 
slowly,  and  that  not  more  than  fifty  names 
have  been  obtained.  I  shall  do  my  best  for 
the  sake  of  Nicholas. — Old  Dr  Osbom  is 
his  most  devout  admirer,  and  declares  that 
the  best  talents  of  the  Country  should  be 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  19*^  18 11 

employed  to  assist  him.  Trumbull  and,  others 
of  note  in  the  East,  he  thinks  wiU  show  them- 
selves ready  and  active. 

I  have  sent  you  with  this  three  newspapers; 
one  contains  a  diverting  Criticism  of  Ver- 
plancks,  on  the  gnat  Smally  and  his  un- 
rivalled performance  of  the  monkeys. — The 
second  contains  one  of  the  ntimbers  of 
Diarrhodon!  The  scene  is  laid  in  Paines 
Exch^:  (which  is  now  a  very  fashionable 
lounge  supported  by  a  subscription  of  eighty 
or  ninety)  the  personages  Pintard  &  Billy 
Rose; — ^the  last  has  another  number  of  the 
same  writer,  &  is  written  with  Addisonian 
elegance,  both  as  to  style  &  thought,  who  the 
writer  of  it  is,  I  know  not,  it  is  supposed  to  lie 
between  Van  Ness  &  D.  Clinton. — 

I  am  truly  sorry  that  I  have  not  a  single 
article  of  news  to  commtmicate,  except  the 
mighty  event  of  my  qtiitting  my  present  bed 
&  board,  to  take  up  my  quarters  on  Monday 
with    Nick    Ogden,    at    Mrs.    Rumsey's    in 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  19th  181 1 

Broad  Way:  the  cause  of  this  unexpected 
decampment  is  compUcated,  principally  owing 
to  that  old  Tabby  Mary  since  the  illness  of 
my  worthy  hostess,  this  vile  old  choakpear 
has  been  invested  with  the  purple,  and  has 
exercised  her  authority  with  unexampled 
tyranny — I  was  driven  to  rebel  and  letters  of 
marque  &  reprisals  were  forthwith  issued, 
but  I  am  obliged  to  imitate  the  conduct  of  my 
cautious  friend  the  illustrious  Earl  of  Busaca, 
and  make  good  a  retreat. 

Another  event  has  happened  of  a  nature 
indeed  at  this  time  distressing,  and  was 
communicated  to  me  in  a  Letter  from  my 
friend  M'  Benjamin  Wilson,  Philadelp :  it  is 
no  other  than  the  stoppage  of  M^  Dilworth, 
who  is  my  debtor  ^10,000 — I  am  however 
assured  by  M'  Wilson,  that  it  arises  solely 
from  the  present  stagnation  of  business  and 
not  for  want  of  means.  M'  Dilworth's  books 
have  been  examined  and  M-  W,  who  is 
both  his  relation  and  patron  &  moreover  a 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  19*^  181 1 

man  of  inviolate  probity  assure[s]  me  that  there 
is  a  surplus  of  ^20,000 — ^but  that  he  must 
have  time  granted  to  pay. — 

The  loss  of  the  use  of  so  large  a  simi  a* 
money,  with  other  vexations  &  disappoint- 
ments, proves  at  this  jimctvire  sadly  embarrass- 
ing, but  I  trust  all  will  go  on  without  any 
serious  difficvilties. — 

I  attended  the  assembly  last  evening  which 
was  numerous  and  brilliant.  Hen  was  there 
in  all  the  simple  majesty  of  her  charms. — M" 
Palmer  (formerly  Miss  Rickets)  I  admire 
vastly ;  her  face  is  extremely  new  and  beautiful. 
— M^  and  M"?  Pendleton,  made  their  first 
appearance  in  Public,  since  their  tinion;  she 
will  not  do;  she  has  already  shrank  to  half  her 
nattiral  size. 

Y'  Mother  I  imderstand  is  weU;  I  have 
neglected  what  I  firmly  intended,  I  mean 
to  call  upon  her. — I  am  also  ashamed  to  say 
that  I  have  not  seen  M"  Renwick,  although 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  19*13  181 1 

I  understood  from  M"?  Hoffman,  that  she 
had  asked  for  me — I  am  resolved — to — to — ■ 
make  resolutions  &  have  just  resolution  enough 
to  break  them. — 

I  stop  the  Press  to  announce  the  receipt  of 
your  welcome  letter  from  Washington  City. 

I  admire  your  undaunted  resolution,  re- 
joice in  your  safety  and  am  inexpressibly 
diverted  with  your  adventures. 

God  Bless  you  my  dear  boy,  and  send  you 
home  soon  and  safe. — 

H.  Brevoort,  J' 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14th  181 1 
New  York,  Feb.  i^-  1811. 


I  never  seized  a  pen  in  a  mood  less  pro- 
pitious than  the  present,  but  as  one  may  take 
the  liberty  of  appearing  an  intimate  in  the 
most  negligent  undress,  I  shall  make  the  best 
of  way  to  the  end  of  the  paper,  and  venture 
to  write  an  epistle  without  having  anything  to 
say.  Judging  from  the  success  with  which  I 
have  practised  this  modem  art,  among  the 
circle  of  our  fair  acquaintance  I  do  not  think 
I  shall  hazard  much  by  the  experiment. 

I  am  deUghted  with  your  mode  of  living, 
&  applaud  your  plan  of  mingling  freely  with 
the  good  of  all  parties,  for  it  is  the  most 
bigotted  opinion  that  was  ever  begotten  to 
maintain  that  the  principles  on  which  the  one 
side  found  their  pohtical  creed,  are  so  im- 
maculate &  wise  as  to  leave  their  opposers  no 
other  choice  than  the  characters  of  fools  & 
knaves. — Yet  we  see  daily  men  of  the  soundest 
sense  of  either  party  acting  upon  this  bar- 

NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14^5  181 1 

barous  &  misbegotten  opinion,  wilfully  shut- 
ting out  from  their  minds  the  light  of  con- 
viction, and  then  protesting  that  all  beyond 
is  darkness  &  danger. — 
'  The  sage  Peter  Kemble  who  is  waiting  to 
accompany  me  to  see  Cooke  in  the  Merry 
Wives  of  Win[d]sor,  bids  me  warn  you  against 
the  danger  of  keeping  company  with  French 
Embassadors,  who  in  his  opinion  are  exceed- 
ingly apt  to  corrupt  young  gentlemen  on  their 
travels. — This  prodigious  youth  is  still  an 
inhabitant  of  the  Wall  Street  dungeon,  study- 
ing the  law  with  might  &  main  in  despite  of 
the  devil  and  the  flesh,  the  latter  of  which 
as  we  all  know  being  naturally  disposed  to 
rebellion. — 

The  cunning  rogue  is  continually  sneering 
at  my  frequent  visits  to  "the  knowing  lads 
that  are  not  to  be  had,"  but  I  have  good 
reason  to  believe  that  the  slyboots  watches 
my  outgoing,  then  takes  possession  himself 

and  romps  with  the  majestic  Hen  at  Shuttle- 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14th  181 1 

cock  and  other  immoral  games.  Little  Sue 
gives  the  most  alarming  sj^nptoms  of  having 
had  her  morals  a  little  damaged  by  bad 
company,  but  a  day  or  two  since  she  informs 
me  with  all  the  simplicity  imaginable,  tliat  the 
Yoting  Lioness  had  hung  up  her  stocking  on 
the  Eve  of  Santaclaus,  and  found  in  them  the 
next  morning  an  elegant  Octavo  edition  of 
Thompson — observing  slyly  at  the  same  time 
that  she  did  not  mean  to  throw  any  imputa- 
tion on  the  size  of  the  Lady's  legs ! — 
;  Old  Cooke  gave  a  dinner  a  few  days  ago  at 
Hodgkinson's,  to  the  fag  ends  of  the  Company, 
meaning  the  Manager,  Simpson,  Robertson, 
Hogg,  Pritchard,  Knox,  Bray  &c,  &c.  Masters 
Doyle,  McFarland,  Smally  &  Daige,  having 
been  excepted,  which  they  all  maintain  to  be 
contrary  to  the  "etiquette  of  true  politeness. " 
— ^The  first  part  of  the  feast  I  understand  was 
conducted  with  great  harmony  jocundity  etc, 
but  about  the  time  the  third  bottle  ascended 

their  pericraniums,  the  spirit  of  dire  confusion 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14th  181 1 

and  fierce  debate  took  full  possession  of  them. 
"God  save  the  King"  was  drunk  standing  by 
all  that  would  and  all  that  could  stand  except 
the  Manager,  who  had  not  loyalty  enough  to 
rise  from  the  Chair;  straightways  all  was 
noise  and  uproar  &  the  spirit  of  party  raged 
furiously. — The  Gallant  Pritchard  (who  is  a 
stout  bruiser)  swore  in  a  loud  voice  that 
the  Yankees  were  rank  Cowards,  had  been 
soundly  drubbed  at  the  Battle  of  Bunker  Hill, 
and  that  he  was  ready  to  maintain  his  opinion 
by  drubbing  any  man  who  dared  to  differ 
with  him.  Simpson,  who  I  learn  has  become  a 
most  hearty  American,  immediately  girt  him- 
self in  the  armour  of  liberty  and  a  combat 
instantly  insued ;  Honest  Simpson  (who  by  the 
advice  of  King  Peter)  anticipated  an  easy  and 
glorious  conquest,  on  finding  himself  getting 
worsted  turned  piteously  around  to  his  ad- 
viser and  requested  to  know  whether  he 
might  not  withdraw  with  honour,  ere  he  fell 
beneath  the  mighty  arm  of  the  furious  Prit- 

NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14th  181 1 

chard,  but  his  Majesty  bade  him  persevere 
and  like  Homer's  Bellona  stood  by  him  to 
animate  the  fight  and  'tis  whispered  that  his 
Godship  (but  I  hope  this  part  of  the  Story  is 
rather  apocryphal)  lent  poor  Pritchard  a 
terrible  blow  on  the  face  which  ended  the 

Robertson,  who  by  this  time  felt  his  patriot- 
ism beginning  to  glow,  insisted  on  the  privi- 
ledge  of  taking  a  share  in  the  fight,  being 
withal  a  natural  bom  American ;  when  up  rose 
Master  Knox,  who  swore  to  defend  and  assist 
his  friend  &  Companion  de  Voyage  Bully 
Pritchard.  Discord  immediately  flapped  her 
brazen  wings. 

And  storming  fury  rose,  and  clamour  such  as  heard 
in  the  Heaven  till  now,  was  never;  Arms  on 
Armour  clashing  brayed  horrible  discord. 

At  length  the  Mighty  Cooke,  began  to  brand- 
ish his  potent  Arm,  swearing,  that  if  this  was 
the  way  his  guests  chose  to  honour  his  feast, 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14!^  181 1 

he  would  be  damned  but  he  would  make  one 
among  them.  The  High  Mettled  Jockey  of 
Norfolk  (Hogg)  luckily  clasped  the  thunder- 
bolt in  his  arms;  finding  himself  safely  lodged, 
Richard  forthwith  exhibited  outrageous  symp- 
toms of  Valour,  for  it  grieves  me  to  say  that 
Capriceous  Nature  has  mingled  in  the  compo- 
sition of  her  Hero  some  of  the  leaven  of 
cowardice,  which  manifested  itself  palpably 
in  Boston. — 

Meeting  Rannie  the  ventriloquist  who  is 
the  most  notorious  coward  &  knave  extant; 
Master  Cooke  requested  him  to  return  a  fifty 
pound  note  which  he  had  in  England  been 
swindled  out  of  by  him;  Rannie  bounced  at 
the  request  and  challenged  Cooke  to  the  field, 
when  lo!  the  buskined  Hero  retreated  to  his 
room,  lodged  himself  safely  under  the  bed  & 
locked  the  door,  and  the  affair  ended  in  a 
prosecution  for  loss  of  character  by  the  Juggler. 
I  must  apologise  for  breaking  thus  the  action 

of  my  story,  and  beg  you  to  call  the  cowardly 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14th  181 1 

anecdote  an  episode;  an  article  indispensable 
in  the  relation  of  epic  events. — 

The  Combatants  having  spent  all  their 
fury,  poor  Simpson,  finding  himself  adorned 
with  a  "blackeye, "  and  the  ragged  Bucking- 
ham sotmdly  pummelled  they  all  withdrew 
from  the  field  of  battle. — Little  Bray  during 
the  whole  of  the  confusion,  kept  himself  snug 
in  a  comer,  moralizing  on  the  passing  scene, 
and  the  first  words  heard  by  the  company 
were.  Fie  upon  it,  "that  Men  should  put  an 
enemy  in  their  mouths  to  steal  away  their 
brains"! — 

Simpson  has  not  been  able  to  play  since — 
I  wish  with  all  my  heart  the  Capt  had  been 
amongst  them,  and  that  Bushel  and  him  had 
come  to  fisticuffs;  for  he  swears  by  his  "liver 
&  lungs"  if  ever  he  catches  King  Stephen  in 
a  situation  somewhat  defenceless  (meaning  a 
little  cloudy  or  so)  that  he  will  take  a  full 
measure  of  vengeance  for  his  exorbitant  fines 
&c,  &c. — 

VOL.  II. — 2.  I J 

NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14"?  181 1 

Knox,  is  a  very  indifferent  actor ;  Pritchard 
I  think  gives  great  promise  in  the  line  of  fine 
Gentlemen,  his  figure  is  extremely  handsome 
&  his  voice  harmonious  &  strong,  but  he  is 
very  raw  &  untutored. — 

Cooke  has  played  miserably  to  miserable 
houses;  he  is  to  appear  soon  in  Kitely  & 
Lear,  &  does  not  go  South  until  the  16  of 
March. — Wood  has  written  to  John  Payne  to 
play  some  nights  alternately  with  Cooke; 
but  his  offer  was  not  considered  liberal  &  the 
Young  Roscius  declined  the  engagement. — 
Dwyer  was  to  have  played  the  above  nights, 
but  thinking  that  Cooke  would  eclipse  him, 
he  wrote  Wood  that  he  might  consider  his 
engagement  forfeited  .^- 

Miss  Eloise  Payne  is  in  Town  &  wishes  ex- 
tremely for  the  honour  of  your  acquaintance ; 
she  is  a  very  fine  accomplished  Woman,  but 
not  remarkably  handsome. — 

Boss,  is  still  in  existence,  but  considers 
himself  as  one  among  the  dead;  I  am  told 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  14*^  1811 

however  this  evening  that  the  Council  are  at 
a  stand  owing  to  a  meeting  that  took  place 
lately  at  Martlings,  at  which,  Clinton  was 
denounced,  &  a  committee  dispatched  to 
Albany  with  a  copy — * 

*  The  end  of  this  Utter  is  missing. 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  26th  igii 

Mackinac,  June  26-  1811. 


M^  M^Gillivray  has  just  arrived  &  handed 
me  your  Letter;  it  is  the  first  intelligence  that 
I  have  received  from  the  regions  of  civiliza- 
tion since  my  departure,  and  I  swear  to  you 
that  no  famished  epicure  ever  devoured  the 
most  delicious  viands  with  more  flavour  than 
did  I  its  contents — I  look  upon  it  as  the  most 
attentive  proof  of  fdship  that  I  ever  received 
from  you. 

The  only  recompense  I  can  make  is  to 
relate  the  history  of  my  pilgrimage  Letter, 
and  as  I  have  but  half  an  hour  to  write  it,  I 
shall  be  brief  and  barren,  and  you  must 
excuse  the  eternal  repetition  of  the  first  person 
singular  for  its  unavoidable. — 

We  left  Montreal  on  the  16  May  in  a  Bark 

Canoe  &  fourteen  paddles,  and  within  eleven 

days  arrived  at  this  place,  making  a  distance 

of  900  computed  miles ! 

I  know  not  how  to  convey  to  you  the  variety 

MACKINAC,  JUNE  26th  181 1 

of  pleasure  that  I  enjoyed  in  traversing 
through  the  most  wild  and  romantic  regions 
in  North  America,  for  who  can  clothe  a  land- 
scape in  words? — 

The  navigation  is  obstricted  by  upwards  of 
forty  rapids  &  waterfalls,  and  the  Canoe  with 
about  4000'"*  of  baggage,  to  be  carried  on 
the  men's  backs  accross  as  many  portages 
some  of  them  two  miles  long,  others  over 
steep  precipices  of  craggy  rocks,  which  an  in- 
experienced traveller  would  find  difficult  even 
to  crawl  over  without  the  risk  of  fracturing  his 
limbs ; — but  these  indefatigable  Canadians  sur- 
mount every  obstruction  by  a  sort  of  instinct 
unknown  in  any  other  animal. — ^We  ascended 
and  descended  a  great  number  of  rapids  & 
falls  with  equal  success ;  in  many  of  them,  the 
slightest  deviation,  would  have  dashed  our 
frail  Vessel  into  atoms ;  but  we  shot  down  them 
with  the  swiftness  and  unerring  certainty  of  a 

*  This  would  seem  to  be  a  heavy  cargo  for  a  canoe,  even  with 
fourteen  men  paddling  I  Could  Brevoort  have  meant  400  pounds, 
or  perhaps  $4000  worth  of  baggage  ? — The  Editor. 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  26^1  1811 

dart  from  a  cross  bow.  The  rapids  of  the  S? 
Laurence  are  mere  ripples  compared  with 
some  of  the  more  dangerous  ones  in  the  Grand 
or  Utawa  River;  the  water  was  often  so  much 
indurated  by  its  rapidity  that  a  fiat  stone 
would  have  floated  down", — ^for  two  hundred 
yards  distance. — 

The  finest  break  of  the  River  is  called  the 
Chaudiere,  about  350  miles  from  Montreal. 
The  river  abruptly  descends  within  a  distance 
of  a  mile  about  200  feet,  forming  a  variety 
of  Falls  &  rapids — We  were  fortunate  in 
arriving  about  an  hour  before  sunfall;  the 
whole  scene  was  shaded  with  a  thick  mist,  in 
a  moment  the  oblique  rays  of  a  fine  evening 
sun  shot  through  this  cloud  of  suspended 
vapour  and  were  refracted  into  the  most 
inchanting  optical  phenomina;  rain  bows 
alternately  appeared  &  disapp"?  &  reflected 
their  images  with  the  utmost  vivacity  through 
the  air,  and  presented  all  the  variagated  hues 
of  the  prism. — 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  26th  181 1 

Whilst  I  was  standing  at  the  foot  of  these 
rapids,  a  Canoe  with  savages  shot  down  them; 
she  appeared  at  first  sight  as  if  she  had  been 
tumbled  from  the  heavens,  for  the  height  of 
the  rapids  was  coeval  with  the  horizon. 

A  little  above  the  Chaudiere  is  a  Fall, 
without  a  name,  (for  here  are  rivers  groves  & 
Falls  unconsecrated  by  song)  which  is  in  the 
highest  degree  romantic;  its  height  is  about 
fifty  feet  descending  in  a  thick  coltimn;  a  small 
Island  divides  it  &  the  lofty  pines  from  either 
side,  of  the  River  &  Island,  form  a  complete 
alcove,  through  which  the  Water  rushes. 

I  could  fill  half  a  dozen  sheets  with  di- 
scriptions  of  scenes  in  every  part  of  this  River 
each  one  of  which  nature  has  marked  with 
distinct  characteristic  features —  but  I  should 
fatigue  your  patience  by  my  feeble  attempts. 

At  some  future  day  you  must  positively 

explore  these  unknown  &  unpraised  retreats 

of  Nature,  and  judge  for  yourself. 

We  encamped    in   our  Tent '  each   night 

MACKINAC,  JUNE  26*!?  181 1 

about  9  O'clk  &  departed  in  the  morning  at 
3  O'clk.— 

I  was  struck  in  some  of  our  encampments 
with  the  novelty  &  variety  of  our  nocturnal 
concerts. — 

The  booming  of  the  Bittern  was  the  thor- 
ough bass;  its  musick  is  the  most  original  & 
melancholy  that  can  be  imagined ;  the  Curlew, 
Duck,  Bull-frog,  Cormorant,  Whip-poor-will — 
&  Wolf  complete  this  savage  symphony. — 

I  have  just  returned  from  a  voyage  of 
pleasure  to  Lake  Superior  &  the  Soult  of  St. 
Mary's,  extremely  delighted. — 

This  Island  is  celebrated  for  its  romantic 
situation,  and  scenery;  and  every  walk  offers 
a  variety — Yesterday  I  discovered  an  Indian 
Catacomb  in  the  side  of  a  Rock  filled  with 
bones  that  have  lain  there  centuries  since. 

We  have  excellent  food  principally  caught 
each  night  from  the  Lake,  fine  White  fish  &  Sal- 
mon Trout,  some  of  which  weigh  45  —  and  are 

as  fat  as  pork:  we  live  completly  a  la  Savage. 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  26th  181 1 

It  is  extremely  uncertain  when  I  shall  be 
able  to  depart  for  N  Y — ^but  I  hope  to  be 
with  you  by  the  i  Sept — 

M°Tavish  writes  me  that  he  intends  a 
visit  to  New  York,  &  shall  remain  there  until 
the  I  August — I  am  vexed  that  I  cannot  be 
there  to  share  his  company. — 

We  are  off!  The  Canoe  is  in  waiting.  I 
cannot  write  six  lines  further,  this  epistle 
scurvy  as  it  is  must  serve  as  a  kind  of  circular 
to  the  Cortes  for  at  present  I  have  not  time  to 
write  others, — 

Rem:  me  affec?  to  Peter  James — &c,  &c, 

&c — &  tho'  last   not  least  M"  Renwick  to 

whom  I  feel  myself  extremely  grateful  for  her 

kind  attentions  to  my  sister. 

I  am, 

My  d^  Irving, 

most  affr  Yi 

Henry  Brevoort  Jf 

I  am  very  glad  to  observe  that  you  have 

crept  into  my  shell  at  M"  Rumsey's. 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  28th  181 1 

Mackinac,  June  28-  181 1. 


I  wrote  you  a  hurried  epistle  a  day  or  two 
since,  giving  a  confused  and  feeble  sketch  of 
the  Scenery  of  the  Grand  River  on  my  voyage 
hither;  with  that  you  must  be  for  the  present 
satisfied;  I  can  only  add  that  all  I  saw  was 
'tremendous  almost'  as  a  great  author 
phrases  it.* 

At  present  I  wish  to  draw  your  attention 
towards  other  objects. — 

This  letter  will  be  accompanied  by  two 
genuine  Indian  Orations  literally  interpreted. 
I  was  present  at  the  delivery  of  Siganack's 
speech,  which  was  spoken  amidst  an  assem- 
blage of  20  Chiefs  with  the  most  forcible  & 
graceful  elocution.  Ogilvy  himself  might 
have  been  instructed  in  attitudes. 

These  speeches  I  wish  you  could  get  pub- 
lished, in  a  newspaper  of  either  party  (if 
possible)   but  at  all  events  to  obtain  their 

*  See  McKenzie's  Voyages — Route  from  Montreal  to  Mackinac. 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  28th  181 1 

insertion  in  one  paper. — I  can  assure  you  that 
they  convey  a  faithful  picture  of  their  present 
and  anticipated  distresses. — 

The  Indian  Nations  of  the  interior  have 
always  been  recognized  by  the  Am:  Govern- 
ment in  their  treaties  with  them  as  Indepen- 
dent people,  beyond  the  jtirisdiction  of  their 
laws,  and  when  the  Embargo  act  passed  an 
exception  was  made  for  the  admission  of 
goods  from  England  for  their  consumption, 
but  the  existing  law  has  no  exception  ia  their 
favour  whatever. 

It  is  to  this  injustice  that  the  speeches 
attend  as  well  as  the  imposition  of  duties 
exacted  at  Mackinac  on  European  goods  for 
their  use  since  the  reign  of  M-  Jefferson;  the 
latter  objection  however  is  at  present  of  sub- 
ordinate importance  to  the  first. — 

All  European  goods  destined  to  the  trade 
of  New  South  "West  American  fur  Com- 
pany" are  now  &  soon  will  be  at  S-  Josephs, 

a  british  post  45  Miles  from  hence,  and  no 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  28«}  1811 

hope  is  entertained  that  Government  will 
grant  them  admission;  consequently  the 
Indians  within  the  U  States,  comprehending  a 
vast  number  of  Nations  upon  the  Lakes  the 
Mississippi  &  its  tributary  rivers,  will  be 
deprived  of  their  accustomed  supplies  of 
goods. — They  are  in  a  very  great  commotion 
respecting  this  invasion  of  their  natural  rights 
as  they  call  it,  and  the  best  informed  traders 
are  of  opinion  that  serious  mischiefs  are  to  be 

It  is  a  deplorable  fact  that  these  miserable 
wanderers  have  become  so  accustomed  to  the 
habits  and  conveniencies  of  their  civilized 
brethren,  that  they  are  unable  to  exist  without 
them — with  the  exception  of  two  or  three 
nations  who  inhabit  the  plains  where  Buffaloes 
are  numerous,  the  bow  and  Indian  cloathing 
are  in  total  disuse. — 

I  should  not  be  surprised  if  their  first  hostile 

attempts  were  directed  against  the  cattle  of 

the  Frontier  settlers,   and  unless  they  find 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  28«l  1811 

themselves  vigourously  repulsed,  their  next 

attempts  would  be  against  the  lives  of  the 

settlers  themselves,  a  calamity  which  ought 

to  be  averted  by  great  sacrifices. — 

Not  long  since  upon  their  being  charged 

with  stealing  a  Horse,   one  of  their  chiefs 

answered  the  claimants,  that  he  was  astonished 

at  the  injustice  of  the  white  men's  demand. — 

What  right  (continued  he)  have  you  to  obtain 

your  Horse?     Do  you  ask  our  Hberty  to  come 

into  our  Forrests  and  kill  our  Deer,  to  bait  your 

hooks  and  spread  your  nets  in  our  Rivers  & 

Lakes,  to  take  our  Fish?  You  first  set  us  the 

example  of  stealing  and  when  we  follow  it,  you 

have  the  effrontery  to  reprimand  us  &  ask 

satisfaction.     But  notwithstanding   all  this, 

we  disclaim  the  aggression  you  complain  of; 

it  was  the  act  of  our  foolish  young  men  whom 

we  cannot  always  control,  we  shall  therefore 

give  back  the  stolen  Horse,  but  we  caution  you 

to  beware  of  the  future. — 

On  another  recent  occasion  Gov :  Hale,  made 

MACKINAC,  JUNE  28th  1811 

a  request  in  Co[u]ncil  to  purchase  a  small  spot 
of  their  land.  They  refused  to  sell  on  any 
terms  for  (said  they)  if  we  give  you  a  spot  the 
bigness  of  one  of  our  feet,  you  will  take  up  a 
handful  of  sand  and  scattering  it  as  far  as  the 
Winds  will  blow,  swear  that  the  whole  extent 
on  which  it  has  fallen  is  yours,  therefore  you 
shall  not  have  it. — We  caution  you  not  to  do 
as  others  of  your  Nation  have  done — ^to  pur- 
chase our  lands  for  a  trifle  of  some  drunken 
worthless  individuals  of  our  tribe,  and  make 
us  all  responsible  for  their  acts. — ^We  now 
declare  that  we  will  never  ratify  any  sale  of 
land  unless  it  be  done  by  all  the  individuals  of 
our  Nation,  for  they  are  all  of  them  owners  in 

The  Am:  Government  instead  of  making 
them  voluntary  presents  of  goods,  have  since 
M^  Jefferson's  reign  established  Factories  (as 
they  call  them)  throughout  the  Country 
with  needy  agents  who  exchange  their  goods 

for  Peltries  on  the  most  niggardly  terms. — 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  sSMi  1811 

This  they  very  properly  call  an  Indian  gift. 
Whereas  the  British  Gov*  have  a  regular 
Indian  department,  &  distribute  cloathing, 
&c.,  to  upwards  of  Ten  thousi  Indians 
annually,  which  I  have  ascertained  from  an 
official  source,  and  are  willing  even  to  ex- 
tend their  benefactions  to  a  still  greater 

'  You  may  form  an  opinion  of  the  popularity 
of  thp  two  governments  from  these  causes  and 
judge  how  easily  it  is  to  overrun  the  cup  of 
bitterness,  by  enacting  a  law  which  prohibits 
the  admission  of  European  goods  into  the  U 
States  intended  to  be  fairly  traded  among  the 
Indians,  whilst  the  Am:  G*  are  unable 
(having  no  stock  of  Indian  goods  in  the  U  S) 
to  substitute  a  supply. 

I  wish  Paulding  &  you  or  yrself  alone  to  take 
the  trouble  of  writing  a  prefatory  note  to  the 
speeches,  stating  that  they  are  authentic  & 
whatever  else  you  make  think  pertinent. 

I  shall  depend  upon  your  attention  to  my 

MACKINAC,  JUNE  28«}  1811 

request,  as  I  stand  pledged  to  have  them 
published. — 

I  have  read  your  Letter  a  dozen  times  & 
each  perusal  made  me  feel  as  if  I  had  just  left 
our  best  of  all  Cities. — In  this  wilderness  one's 
local  affections  are  ever  tugging  at  one's 
heart;  it  is  impossible  to  know  by  how  many 
imperceptible  fibers  the  soul  is  bound  to 
familiar  objects,  until  one  separates  from  them 
and  resides  for  a  while  remote  from  Civiliza- 
tion, then  each  one  holds  him  with  the  force 
of  a  cable. — 

Avert  thy  glorious  face  divine  Apollo  from 
the  unworthy  occupation  of  thy  choicest 
votary  the  renowned  Knickerbocker,  but  when 
he  again  supplicates  thy  aid  &  has  finished 
copying  his  invoices  of  filthy  Dowlass,*  in- 
spire him  with  immortal  fire. 

Would  to  Heaven  you  were  with  me  in  this 
second  Eden  (without  an  Eve).  Within  an 
hours  walk,  I  would  scramble  with  you  to  the 

*  A  coarse  linen  doth  made  in  Scotland. 

MACKINAC,  JUNE  28!^  181 1 

stunmit  of  a  venerable  old  rock,  from  whose 
lofty  head  you  would  behold  natures  savage 
face,  expanded  to  endless  dimentions,  com- 
manding a  partial  view  of  Lakes  Michigan 
&  Huron,  studded  with  innumerable  islands 
and  botmded  by  the  most  romantic  Bays, 
Inlets,  Promontories  &  Rivers,  the  seats  of  fu- 
ture Cities  and  future  Empires. — ^Then  might 
you  indeed  exclaim  with  Milton, 

As  one  who  long  in  populous  city  pent, 
Where  houses  thick  &  sewers  annoy  the  air. 
Forth  issuing  on  a  Summer's  morn,  to  breathe 
The  smell  of  grain  or  tedded  grass,  or  kine 
Or  dairy,  each  rural  sight,  each  rural  sound. 

Your  History  is  going  the  rounds  through 
the  Village  from  the  Commandant  to  the 
smallest  Indian  Trader,  so  that  you  contribute 
more  to  their  merriment  &  pleasure  than  you 
probably  would  if  you  were  here  yourself. 
The  chapter  on  the  right  of  Discovery  delights 
them;  one  of  the  Traders  swears  you  must  have 

VOL.  II.— 3-  33 

MACKINAC,  JUNE  28«}  1811 

wintered  among  the  Indians,  for  you  appear  to 
know  them  so  well. — 

I  shall  have  very  little  active  employment, 
unless  the  Am:  Gov-  admit  the  Companies 
goods,  &  I  hope  to  leave  hence  by  the  10 
August,  with  M^  M^Gillivray  &  be  among 
you  by  the  i  -  September. — 

I  am  glad  to  find  you  so  contented  since  you 
have  crept  into  my  shell,  I  doubt  not  that  I 
shall  quarter  with  you  on  my  return. — 

It  vexes  me  to  have  lost  M'?Tavish's  &  Ch's 
&  Ann's  visit  to  New  York. — 

Keep  Peter  at  his  post  &  feed  him  with 
cantharides  to  excite  his  amorous  spirits.  I 
swear  by  the  Gods  he  must  triumph,  he  is 
worth  a  wilderness  of  his  rivals  &  the  fair 
Princess   altogether. — 

I   salute   M'.=    H M"^^   R.    Gertrude 

Eliza,    &c,    &c,   with   my    kindest  regards. 

Remember  me  also  in  the  most  fdly  manner 

to  all  whom  I  am  interested  about — &  do  not 

forget  Inskeep  &  even  little  Mosey. — 


MACKINAC,  JUNE  28^1  1811 

If  you  think  a  Letter  will  have  time  to 
reach  me  on  receipt  of  this  at  Montreal,  write 
a  volume — 


Afifec  Y'.  f? 
Henry  Brevoort  J'. 

Shew  old  Astor  the  speeches  if  he  wishes  to 
see  them. 


MACKINAC,  JULY  14!!}  1811 

Mackinac,  July  14- 1811. 


I  have  now  passed  nearly  two  months  and 
shall  be  condemned  to  pass  almost  two 
months  to  come,  literally  shut  out  from  the 
busy  world,  without  even  Cowpers  loop  holes 
to  peep  through;  in  short  as  completely  iso- 
lated as  was  the  renowned  Rob:  Crusoe  of 
your,*  and  ten  times  more  idle. 

All  the  curiosities  which  nature  has  lavished 
upon  this  romantic  little  Island,  have  been 
again  &  again  explored,  &  I  begin  to  wish 
devoutly  for  my  departure,  for  it  is  recorded 
that  even  Paradise  lost  its  inchantment  & 
became  a  desert  wild,  without  a  companion. 
There  is  however  no  want  of  Eves  in  these 
inhospitable  regions,  all  of  whom  D^  Romaine 
might  claim  as  the  legitimate  descendants  of 
his  sooty  Adam,  from  the  dinginess  of  their 
complexions. — 

But  these  are  not  the  companions  in  ques- 



MACKINAC,  JULY  14M!  181 1 

tion;  I  scorn  such  spurious  offspring  of  our 
great  grand  mother,  M"?  Adam. — 

There  is  not  a  man  here  of  the  least  con- 
geniaKty,  either  of  taste  habits,  or  thinking 
with  myself. — 

I  have  few  books ;  the  son  in  law  has  de- 
prived me  of  occupation,  and  the  Demon  of 
solitude  has  cursed  me  with  his  deadliest 
influence. — If  by  some  magical  device  you 
could  manage  to  bestride  one  of  these  Arabian 
steeds,  celebrated  in  romance  for  their  docility 
and  swiftness,  &  convey  yourself  beside  me,  I 
would  engage  to  go  frantic  with  joy,  which  I 
think  ought  to  satisfy  any  reasonable  man  of 
the  value  of  my  affection. — ^Added  to  this,  I  am 
surrounded  by  upwards  of  a  score  of  Indian 
Traders,  who  being  cut  off  from  their  accus- 
tomed supplies  of  goods  from  the  Company, 
are  completely  set  adrift  upon  the  wide  world, 
as  desperate  as  so  many  famished  wolves. 
The  framers  of  this  cruel  law,  in  omitting  an 
exemption  in  favour  of  the   Indians,   were 


MACKINAC,  JULY  14!!}  181 1 

either  ignorant  of  its  fatal  effects,  or  saw  them 
so  distantly,  as  to  extinguish  the  natural 
feelings  of  their  humanity. — 

They  have  wantonly  deprived  an  indepen- 
dent people  of  their  usual  supplies,  without 
providing  substitutes. —  The  Traders  must 
return  to  their  Wintering  Posts ;  &  when  they 
are  asked  why  they  bring  no  goods,  the  whole 
blame  will  be  thrown  upon  the  Am:  Gov*, 
whose  measures  &  policy  were  before,  but  too 
obnoxious,  toward  the  natives.  The  conse- 
quences are  therefore  inevitable;  hundreds  of 
the  children  of  these  unprovided  savages  must 
starve,  and  their  furious  parents  will  assuredly 
revenge  their  deaths  upon  the  unoffending 
whites,  who  inhabit  the  frontiers. — 

These  melancholy  considerations  are  the 
constant  subjects  of  discourse  without  the 
probability  of  melioration,  and  make  me  long 
for  the  society  of  my  friends  at  home. — 

What  magic  is  contained  in  that  honest 

little   word   home!    It   is   impossible   for   a 

38    ' 

MACKINAC,  JULY  14*^  1811 

wandering  exile  to  speak  or  write  it,  without 
kindling  in  the  soul  a  blaze  of  pleasure! — On 
my  feelings,  it  operates  as  a  talisman  to  dispel 
melancholy  and  animate  hope;  reviving  all 
those  local  affections  that  play  about  the 
heart,  and  which  after  all  our  chilling  philo- 
sophy, constitute  the  true  end  and  charm  of 
existence. — I  have  often  thought  that  if  such  a 
reptile  as  myself,  has  the  power  of  forming 
sympathies,  so  indissoluble  towards  particular 
persons  &  places,  how  irresistable  must  be  the 
longings  of  the  exile  whose  consequence  and 
talents,  made  him  the  idol  of  that  society 
which  he  once  adorned ! — 

I  doubt  exceedingly  whether  my  Lord 
Bolingbroke's  eloquent  remedies  did  not  sink 
into  despair  under  the  miseries  of  his  banish- 

Let  me  enjoin  you  not  to  ridicule  this  singu- 
lar train  of  reflections  on  Solitude — Zimmer- 
man himself  never  wrote  under  the  influence  of 

such  genuine  feelings — I  therefore  commend 


MACKINAC,  JULY  I4«l  1811 

both  your  reverence  &  silence  on  a  subject  so 
sacred. — 

We  look  for  a  canoe  from  Montreal  daily, 
and  I  have  promised  myself  a  long  epistle 
from  you,  but  if  I  find  that  you  have  forgotten 
me  in  your  wanderings,  "I  will  have  such 
terrible  revenge  —  but  what  it  is  I  know 

How  shall  I  eke  out  this  whining  epistle? 
The  exchequer  of  my  imagination  is  ex- 
hausted, and  the  wayw^ard  spirit,  will  not 
advance  a  line  without  halting. — 

I  disdain  to  apologize  for  this  dolour. 
As  to  a  discontented  spirit,  I  scorn  it  from 
my  very  soul;  but  somehow  or  other,  I  feel 
myself  sunken  into  a  state  of  abandon- 
ment which  nothing  but  the  company  of 
those  I  hold  nearest  my  heart  can  al- 

Did  you  get  the  Indian  speeches  published? 

— Siganack  with  six  of  his  most  potent  chiefs 

have  shouldered  their  grievances  and  marched 


MACKINAC,  JULY  14!^  181 1 

toward  Washington  for  the  purpose  of  obtain- 
ing relief  from  the  President. — 

From  their  dignity  &  influence  as  well  as  the 
objects  of  their  Mission  I  imagine  there  never 
went  a  more  respectable  deputation  of  Indians 
to  Govern*. — I  would  have  given  them  a 
Letter  of  introduction  to  you,  but  it  was  out  of 
their  route  to  pass  through  New  York,  either 
in  going  or  returning. — They  are  by  far  the 
finest  looking  Indians  I  ever  saw. — Since  you 
are  fairly  in  for  the  postage  of  a  double  sheet, 
I  will  fill  up  the  paper  with  a  story  of  savage 
superstition,  related  to  me  yesterday  by  an 
old  Trader. — On[e]  night  last  winter  a  noted 
Indian  magician,  whose  incantations  I  suspect 
are  performed  by  the  aid  of  Ventriloquism, 
came  with  a  number  of  followers  to  pay  the 
Trader  a  friendly  visit. — Whilst  smoaking 
their  pipes  around  the  fire,  they  were  suddenly 
amazed  at  hearing  the  most  lamentable  cries 
of  an  infant  issuing  from  above. — The  won- 
dering Savages  prostrated  themselves  in  fear 


MACKINAC,  JULY  14^  181 1 

&  trembling,  except  the  inchanter,  who  very 
coolly  bade  them  allay  their  fears,  as  the  cries 
they  heard  were  nothing  else  than  little  Starry 
face,  one  of  his  Manitoo's  (sprights)  who  was 
fluttering  in  the  upper  part  of  the  room,  and 
signified  to  him  that  a  large  Bear,  was  secreted 
in  a  hole  some  steps  from  the  cabin. — His 
auditors  began  again  to  take  breath,  when  the 
Copper  Coloured  Prospero  forthwith  shoul- 
dered his  Gun,  and  presently  returned  drag- 
ging along  with  him  honest  Bruin,  having  shot 
him  in  the  very  spot  identified  by  his  Ariel ! — 
It  is  unnecessary  to  add  that  the  fellow  had  no 
doubt  discovered  before  he  entered  the  cabin 
the  Bear's  hiding  place. — Owing  to  a  number 
of  miracles  of  this  nature,  the  natives  look 
upon  him  as  either  the  legal  Vicegerent  of  the 
Great  Master  of  life,  or  the  very  devil  him- 
self.— He  occasionally  folds  himself  into  the 
fresh  hide  of  a  Buffaloe,  and  ties  all  his  joints 
with  sinews — in  this  state  his  prophecies  are 

held  oracular,  especially  if  he  manages  to  ex- 


MACKINAC,  JULY  14!!}  181 1 

tricate  himself  quickly  from  the  knots. — ^W. 
Scott  must  have  had  him  in  his  eye. — 
God  Bless  you  my  d-  fellow — 

H.  B.  y. 


MACKINAC,  JULY  29"?  181 1 

Mackinac,  July  2^- 181 1. 

Blessed  be  the  cheering  sound  of  the  voice 
of  friendship  when  heard  in  such  a  dreary- 
wilderness  as  this ! — 

Your  last  epistle  my  dear  Wash:  has 
certainly  rescued  me  from  petrifaction.  I  felt 
myself  waxing  fast  into  that  blissful  state ;  my 
heart  began  to  exhibit  the  first  symptoms,  and 
I  think  it  not  improbable,  that  some  future 
generation  of  Barbers  might  have  sharpened 
their  razors  upon  my  poor  forlorn  carcas. — 

"To  what  vile  pttrposes  may  we  not  return — 

I  am  of  opinion  that  a  state  of  idle  solitude, 
would  prove  a  much  more  agonising  punish- 
ment for  candidates  to  the  lower  regions,  than 
the  fire  &  brimstone  terrors  proclaimed  by 
itinerent  alarmists. — The  Letter  within  was 
written  a  few  days  ago  under  the  fullest 
influence  of 

Vain  Phantacies!  the  fleeting  brood 

Of  woe,  selfsolaced  in  her  dreary  mood ! — 


MACKINAC,  JULY  29*  181 1 

But  the  kind  efforts  of  my  N  York  friends  & 
you  as  chief  magician  have  (I  hope)  effectually 
exorcised  the  vile  Demon. — I  would  not  send 
it,  if  it  were  not  for  the  purpose  of  shewing 
you  how  exactly  our  lethargic  miseries  corre- 
sponded though  originating  from  somewhat 
opposite  causes. 

Oh!  man,  man,  what  a  villanous  compound 
of  crudities  art  thou! — One  moment  the 
mercury  of  thy  soul  sinks  ten  degrees  below 
despair,  and  the  next  moment  (from  causes 
inscrutable)  rises  again,  to  the  highest  pitch 
of  hope  &  enthusiasm. 

Just  such  a  machine  am  I ;  as  varient  as  the 
moon  beams,  that  I  now  see,  dartiiig  their 
quivering  shadows  on  the  tranquil  bosom  of 
the  mighty  Huron. — I  have  of  late  (&  I  know 
not  wherefore)  felt  apprehensive  lest  I  might 
peradventure,  make  my  exit  in  this  fag  end  of 
creation. — 

The  Savages  are  beginning  to  raise  the  war 

[w]hoop  against  their  brethren  the '  big  knives, ' 


MACKINAC,  JULY  29^  181 1 

and  I  almost  regret  having  left  in  N  York  my 
old  perriwig,  as  it  might  possibly  have  been  the 
means  of  saving  my  scalp. — 

But  in  sober  sadness,  should  I  (my  d-  boy) 
"shuffle  off  my  mortal  coil" 

"And  o'er  my  head  close  the  dark  gulf  of 
time!"  ;n  this  villanous  terra  incognita,  I 
should  certainly  run  the  hazard  of  being  out 
of  roll-call  at  the  general  muster;  and  conse- 
quently be  lost  to  my  friends  in  waiting 
upon  the  shadowy  side  of  the  River  Styx. 
— ^Ah!  whoreson  caterpillar  that  I  am;  lit- 
tle did  I  ever  dream  of  sympathising  with 
that  cream  &  sciun  of  sensibility  Madam 

This  celebrated  belle  esprit,  relates  in  her 

memoirs  that  on  a  certain  occasion,  she  became 

marvellously  afflicted  at  the  prospect  of  ending 

her  existence,  in  the  vicinity  of  a  brotherhood 

of  Sulpician  Monks — ^not  so  much  from  the 

terrors  of  dying,  as  from  a  personal  knowledge 

that  the  place  of  sepulture  had  been  moistened 


MACKINAC,  JULY  29^?  181 1 

time  out  of  mind  by  these  lusty  prisoners  of 

This  little  anecdote  certainly  exhibits  ter- 
rors of  a  'watery  grave'  in  an  original  and 
truly  pathetic  point  of  view ! — 

I  have  written  so  many  Letters  this  evening 
that  my  eye  lids  begin  to  wag  for  sleep.  One 
of  them  is  to  that  little  boar-pig  the  prince 
Regent  in  his  fallen  state. — I  have  proffered 
to  him  the  bahn  of  consolation,  and  took  the 
liberty  of  telling  him,  that  of  all  things  imder 
heaven,  a  little  man  impatient  of  adversity,  is  a 
sight,  that  has  ever  been  scoffed,  scouted,  & 
sneered,  by  both  Gods  &  men.  I  have  moreover 
proposed  a  plan  whereby  he  may  be  reinstated 
to  all  his  shorn  dignities.  Remember  me  to 
James,  &  unless  he  has  forgotten  me,  which 
I  begin  to  fear. — If  you  chance  to  see  the 
Wilkes',  give  my  kindest  regards  to  them,  & 
all  others  who  live  in  my  remembrance. 

Thiae  forever  &  ever! 

H.  Brevoort,  JT 


MACKINAC,  JULY  29th  181 1 

Remember  to  the  'rugged  Physics,*  honest 
Swart:*  who  M'  M^G.  told  me  came  fellow 
passenger  with  him  to  N.  York. — 

*  Samuel  Swarlwout,  later  Collector   of  the  Port,  whose   career 
ended  disastrously  through  speculations  in  Texas  lands. 


PARIS,  APRIL  14th  1 812 

Paris,  April  14-  1812. 


We  landed  at  Cherbourg  on  the  5*  ins* 
after  a  passage  of  26  days,  dtiring  which  we 
encountered  nothing  but  a  succession  of 
gales,  &c: — ^but  as  I  am  partly  descended 
from  a  family  of  sailors,  I  escaped  the  misery 
of  sea-sickness  altogether. — I  may  therefore 
be  permitted  to  assert,  that  except  being 
under  water  (as  the  sailors  phrase  it)  all  the 
way;  throwing  a  somerset  against  the  side  of 
the  cabin,  and  making  a  fearful  breach  accross 
my  nose  (which  is  yet  unclosed)  together  with 
the  double  curse  of  an  execrable  cook  and  a 
drunken  steward,  the  passage  was  somewhat 
agreeable. — 

I  saw  none  of  the  Wonders  of  the  deep ;  no 
whales,  no  Mermaids,  nor  not  even  a  wave  as 
high  as  the  steeple  of  S*  Paul's  church;  and 
I  confess  myself  guilty  of  no  other  sentimental 
emotion  than  a  slight  twinge  of  pleasure  on 
discovering  the  Lizard. — 

VOL.  n. — 4.  49 

PARIS,  APRIL  i4«i  1812 

Our  journey  from  Cherbourg  hither  (I 
mean  Henry  Cap:  Jones  &  myself)  was 
through  lower  Normandy,  by  the  way  of 
Valogne,  Bayeux  Caen  &  Evreux,  all  Towns  of 
the  remotest  antiquity,  and  like  every  other 
member  of  that  gray  headed  family  resident 
in  France,  of  a  most  respectable,  most  ragged 
&  most  forlorn  aspect. — ^At  Evreux  however 
I  was  first  gratified  with  a  sight  of  a  Gothic 
cathedral,  and  although  I  was  apprised  that  it 
was  a  mere  min[i]ature  of  those  I  should  see 
both  in  this  Country  &  England,  yet  I  cannot 
easily  forget  its  solemn  grandeur,  and  the 
sublimity  of  feeling  with  which  I  felt  myself 
inspired  in  approaching  its  lofty  altar. — 

Within  half  a  league  of  Evreux  stands  the 
ancient  palace  of  Navarre,  once  the  residence 
of  the  noble  family  of  BouUon,  but  at  present 
one  of  three  palaces  which  form  the  establish- 
ment of  her  Imp:  Maj:  the  Empress  Jose- 

The  palace  is  small  &  the  architecture  not 

PARIS,  APRIL  i'4th  1 812 

in  the  least  magnificent,  the  ground  &  water 
are  however  disposed  with  considerable  art, 
but  the  situation  is  in  a  Valley,  or  rather  a 
Swamp,  admirably  adapted  to  the  residence  of 
a  colony  of  Beavers. — 

As  the  Empress  was  absent  on  a  visit  to 
Mahnaison,  we  were  conducted  through  every 
part  of  her  palace:  the  apartments  (except  the 
Saloon)  are  small  and  far  from  elegant,  but 
the  ftuTiiture  and  decorations,  display  a  taste 
in  the  Empress  of  the  most  exquisite  refine- 
ment, calculated  to  inspire  the  most  exalted 
opinion  of  the  simplicity  and  elegance  of  her 
mind  &  pursuits. — 

Perhaps  you  may  suspect  me  of  having  a 
slight  prejudice  in  favour  of  her  Majesty, 
more  partictdarly  as  I  have  so  far  enjoyed  her 
favour,  as  to  gain  admittance  even  into  her 
bed  chamber  &  private  bath. — 

My  attention  was  first  arrested  in  France 

by  the  grotesque  costume  and  characteristic 

features  of  the  Norman  Peasantry. — I  cannot 


PARIS,  APRIL  14th  1 81 2 

express  to  you  the  pleasure  I  felt  in  observing 
their  old  fashioned  customs,  dress,  habitation, 
&c,  for  I  am  a  lover  of  the  olden  time. — For 
more  than  200  Miles  on  our  way  towards 
Paris,  we  saw  the  same  ancient  style  of  head- 
dress, adorning  the  same  style  of  features,  that 
existed  in  the  times  of  the  renowned  William 
the  Conqueror. — 

An  American  generally  obtains  his  notions 
of  modem  France  through  the  exaggerated 
medium  of  English  newspapers,  and  conse- 
quently expects  to  find  the  peasantry  in  a 
state  of  absolute  beggary  and  despair. — Cer- 
tainly nothing  can  be  farther  from  truth. — I 
speak  from  my  own  observation  on  our  way 
hither,  and  can  positively  state  that  I  have 
never  seen  so  rich  a  country,  nor  one  half  so 
well  cultivated;  for  two  hundred  miles  the 
country  was  covered  with  fields  of  grain,  of 
the  richest  verdure,  abundantly  stocked  with 
sheep  &  cattle.    The  peasantry  were  handsome 

of  fair  healthy  complexions,  cheerful  aspect, 


PARIS,  APRIL  i4tJl  1 812 

remarkably  well  clothed  and  exhibiting  every 
mark  of  fat  content. 

From  Evreux  to  Paris  (about  60  Miles)  we 
came  into  a  vine  country  and  I  was  sorry  to 
perceive  that  the  inhabitants  had  a  less 
prosperous  appearance  than  their  more  remote 
brethren;  I  also  noticed  that  the  standard 
elevation  of  the  good  old  Norman  coif  sudden- 
ly fell  six  inches,  and  appeared  nearly  divested 
of  its  waving  streamers. — 

I  fear  I  shall  weary  your  patience  with 
uninteresting  details,  but  I  really  feel  desirous 
of  contradicting  the  belief  of  the  starving  state 
of  the  French  peasantry  by  a  brief  recital  of 
what  I  have  seen. — 

Behold  us  now  in  possession  of  an  elegant 

suite  of  apartments  in  the  Hotel  de  I'Empire 

which  we  have  taken  for  two  weeks. — ^As  I 

have  been  but  four  days  in  Paris,  I  am  not 

prepared  to  say  anything  that  can  amuse  you ; 

indeed  I  find  that  it  will  take  me  some  time  to 

accommodate  myself  to  the  vast  scale  on  which 


PARIS   APRIL  14th  1 8 12 

everything  in  this  place  is  conducted;  besides 
I  have  been  confined  the  last  two  days  by  a 
severe  cold,  which  is,  I  am  told  a  tribute  paid 
by  every  stranger  on  his  first  residence  in 
Paris. — 

M-  Barlow  and  M'  Warden  received  me 
with  attention  &  kindness,  and  I  have  every 
reason  to  believe  that  the  next  three  months 
will  form  the  most  pleasureable  epoch  of  my 

As  to  speaking  the  French  language,  I  am 
not  unlike  a  person  who  is  recovering  a  lost 
sense;  every  day  adds  to  my  strength. — I 
studied  as  much  as  it  was  possible  on  the 
passage,  and  have  now  an  excellent  master,  & 

shall  soon  have  an  excellent ,  all  of  which, 

united  with  my  insatiate  desire  to  acquire  the 
language  cannot  fail  of  ultimate  success. — 
After  remaining  here  three  months  provided 
I  get  enough  of  the  Language,  I  shall  com- 
mence travelling. — 

They  tell  me  that  at  present  Paris  is  ex- 

PARIS,  APRIL  14!^  1812 

tremely  dull.  The  Emperour  after  spending 
some  time  at  S*  Cloud  shut  up  in  close  study, 
has  gone  to  join  his  army  of  upwards  of  400,000 
men,  the  whole  of  whom  are  now  on  their 
march  toward  the  North. — Cambaceres,  has 
said  that  the  present  project  outstrips  all 
others  in  magnitude  and  importance,  but 
upon  whom  the  thunder  will  burst  is  known 
only  to  the  Emperour  himself,  as  it  is  said  he 
has  not  communicated  his  designs  to  any 
person. — The  general  opinion  is  that  Russia 
is  the  power  against  which  his  strength  is 
levelled,  but  M-  Warden,  who  has  access  to 
good  sources  of  information,  tells  me  that 
Turkey  is  to  become  a  province  of  France — 
also  that  aU  the  marine  towns  on  the  Con- 
tinent are  to  receive  strong  reinforcements  in 
order  to  keep  out  English  goods. — 

By  the  Wasp  I  shall  write  to  you  again  and 
send  out  a  few  articles  under  the  care  of  one 
of  the  officers  for  yrself  &  others:  there  has 
not  been  anything  published  lately  that  could 


PARIS,  APRIL  14th  1812 

possibly  interest  you,  but  I  shall  know  more 
of  that  by  &  bye. — 

Both  M^  Barlow  &  M-  W  desired  me  to 
advise  Inskeep  to  send  out  3  or  4  doz:  Cop: 
of  the  Ornithology  &  to  make  a  present  of  a 
set  to  the  National  Institute,  and  that  both 
of  them  would  take  upon  themselves  the 
trouble  of  selling  them. 

I  understand  there  are  a  number  Americans 
going  home  in  the  Hornet,  but  as  I  have 
made  a  resolution  to  know  as  few  of  my 
countrymen  as  possible  while  abroad  I 
scarcely  know  their  names. — 

My  friend  Henry  has  been  made  the  dupe 
of  a  rascal  under  the  title  of  Duke  de  Crul- 
ler, who  accompanied  him  from  Engl"?  to 
America.  He  had  an  interview  with  the  real 
Duke  de  Cruller  this  day  who  declares  the 
fellow  to  be  an  imposter,  and  the  proper 
documents  will  be  forwarded  by  the  Hornet 
to  stop  his  career.   Henry  never  communicated 

his  connexion  with  the  fellow,  until  we  were 


PARIS,  APRIL  14th  1812 

on  the  coast  of  France:  as  soon  as  he  had 
finished  his  relation,  I  instantly  hinted  at  the 
possibility  of  his  being  an  imposter,  but  H 
would  not  listen  to  my  suspicions. — 

I  earnestly  hope  Henry's  character  will  not 
suffer  by  his  connexion  with  the  scoundrel; 
people  should  consider  that  it  is  only  honest 
men  who  are  the  dupes  of  villainy. — 

It  would  take  a  volume  to  explain  the  whole 
of  the  cheat;  I  am  certain  however  that  it 
would  exhibit  a  tissue  of  exquisite  imposition 
not  exceeded  by  Semple,  or  even  Mahomed 
himself! — 

Henry  is  cut  to  the  very  heart;  but  he  bears 
it  like  a  man. — 

■  I  am  so  pinched  for  time  that  I  have  merely 
written  a  few  lines  to  Gov:  &  Peter,  referring 
them  for  particulars  to  you. — 

I  must  not  forget  to  observe  that  John  E 
Seaman  Esq.,  called  upon  me  &  from  the 
extravagance  of  his  conversation  relative  to 
the  affairs  of  this  Country,  I  am  of  opinion 


PARIS,  APRIL  I4«?  1812 

that  he  is  somewhat  deranged ;  he  will  return 
to  N  Y  in  about  5  weeks. — He  hinted  that 
his  only  object  in  remaining  here  was  to 
stop  the  growing  power  of  'this  man'*  as  he 
phrases  it !   All  this  for  your  private  ear. — 

Rem:  me  affec:  to  my  dear  friend  M'? 
Renwick  &  her  family. — 

Rem:  me  also  to  M^  &  M"  Ryckman  &  the 
family,  not  forgetting  even  our  Tom. — The 
Barrel  of  Apples  was  the  most  choice  article 
on  board  the  ship. — 

I  have  not  seen  any  face  in  France  with 
one  half  the  beauty  of  the  fair,  Julia! — 

God  bless  you  my  dear  boy. — 

*  NapoleonI 


PARIS,  MAY  i2th  1812 

Paris,  May  i2~  1812. 


The  messenger  has  this  moment  called  to 
demand  my  Letters  for  the  U  States,  within 
an  hour,  M'  Barlow  having  ordered  his 
immediate  departure,  I  have  therefore  only 
time  to  scribble  you  a  hurried  epistle. — 

In  the  first  place  Capt  Whetten,  will 
deliver  into  your  hands  a  dozen  superfine 
french  shirts,  which  I  have  sent  out  in  the 
Wasp,  cost  28  f's  each;  the  Cravats  &  pocket 
hkfs  could  not  be  got  ready. — 

In  the  next  place,  I  have  pitched  my  tent 
in  Paris  until  the  i'-*  Sept'  for  the  purpose  of 
acquiring  the  language  in  the  intermediate 
time. — To  that  end  I  avoid  every  person  who 
has  the  misfortune  to  speak  English,  as 
cautiously  as  if  they  were  infected  with  the 
plague,  and  by  dint  of  hammering  I  absolutely 
begin  to  stammer  a  little  vile  French.  It  is  a 
most  nauseating  pill,  but  I  nevertheless  ad- 
vance, although  my  daily  progress  appears 


PARIS,  MAY  1 2th  1812 

(to  myself)  as  imperceptable  as  the  perforation 
of  a  rock  by  the  daily  droppings  of  water. — 
My  dear  boy,  if  you  were  but  with  me  to 
assist  me  in  laughing  at  this  most  ludicrous, 
characteristic,  quizzical,  nonsensical  &  de- 
lightful of  all  the  nations  under  the  canopy  of 
heaven! — I  have  not  found  any  one  who  has 
any  relish  for  my  peculiar  sources  of  amuse- 
ment,— ^Por  instance,  one  of  my  chiefest 
pleasures  is  to  sally  forth  early  in  the  morning, 
and  abandon  my  steps  to  the  direction  of 
chance,  wander  onward  until  the  the*  calls  of 
hunger  suggests*  the  necessity  of  a  coach. — 
It  is  impossible  to  give  you  a  journal  of  the 
ludicrous  scenes  which  one  encounters  in 
every  turn. — ^Afterwards  I  dive  into  one  of 
the  Caves  imder  the  Palais  Royal  and  have 
the  honour  of  making  one  in  as  whimsical  a 
group  of  oddities  as  it  is  possible  to  bring 
together — viz:  charlatins,  diviners  of  the 
fates,  grimace-masters,  posture  masters,  old 

*  Brevoort  was,  obviously,  writing  hurriedly. — The  Editok. 

PARIS,  mAy  12*  1 812 

politicians,  spies  of  the  police,  toe-nail  cutters 
— dog  frissieures,  &c,  &c. — 

Your  friend  Brun6  is  in  high  favour  with 
the  public,  and  fools  it  to  the  very  top  of  his 
bent. — 

I  shall  not  say  anything  about  picture 
galleries,  operas,  plays,  palaces,  &c,  except 
the  little  palace  of  Trianon  at  Versailles, 
which  with  its  gardens  laid  out  after  the 
English  style,  exceed  anything  that  the  most 
fruitful  imagination  could  have  conceived: 
indeed  so  perfectly  magical  was  the  whole 
scene  to  me,  that  I  should  not  have  been 
greatly  surprized  to  have  beheld  groups  of 
Fairies,  Satyrs,  Genii  &  the  whole  family  of 
supernatural  gentry  startg.  up  before  me,  and 
frolicking  through  "the  alleys  green," — 

The  Emperour  did  not  set  off  to  join  the 
grand  Army  until  the  morning  of  the  9-; 
the  Empress  travels  with  him  as  far  as  Dres- 
den for  the  purpose  of  seeing  her  family. — 

I  saw  them  both  at  the  opera  a  few.  evenings 


PARIS,  MAY  12*^  1812 

since;  his  countenance  did  not  dissappoint 
me,  for  I  never  thought  that  it  announced  the 
greatness  of  his  character: — it  bears  a  most 
striking  likeness  to  the  late  prints,  except 
that  it  has  a  more  saturnine  &  thoughtful 
expression. — 

The  Emp'^^*  has  a  perfect  high-dutch  phisi- 
ognomy  &  of  course  no  beauty;  she  has  be- 
come extremely  thin  of  late. — 

M'  Barlow  has  behaved  to  me  in  a  manner 
the  most  indifferent  &  inhospitable  he  has 
(notwithstanding  his  voluntary  promise  to 
the  contrary)  neglected  to  present  me  to  the 
Emperour,  who  has  had  a  public  day  since 
my  arrival. — I  do  not  like  to  make  complaints 

against  M'  B but   unless   he  has  some 

better  motive  for  his  conduct  than  I  can  at 
present  perceive,  I  swear  to  be  even  with 
him  in  the  end,  &  so  ends  the  affair  for  the 
present. — 

*  Maria  Louisa,  Archduchess  of  Austria,  and  not  the  Empress 
Josephine  mentioned  in  Brevoort's  preceding  letter. — The  Editor. 


''V^_    -^ly<<^-T^^ 

''^^ "— ^^  ^ 




— \ 



^'^^-i^C^^^Uf-.^^f-^^      f^ 


PARIS,  MAY  12*^  1812 

You  must  endeavour  to  find  a  safe  convey- 
ance for  a  new  Knickerbocker  &  a  sett  of 
Salmagundi;  I  want  to  present  them  to  Mad: 
D'Arblay  the  authoress  of  Evelena,  &c,  &c. 

Have  you  written  to  me? — 

I  know  you  will  think  me  a  shabby  fellow 
for  putting  you  off  with  such  a  mawkish 
epistle  as  the  present;  but  you  must  also 
recollect  how  impossible  it  is  to  write  a  good 
Letter  from  Paris. — I  offer  the  like  excuse  to 
Peter  &  Gouv: — 

Rem:  me  to  the  household  &  and  do  not  let 
the  insignificant  space  which  my  absence  has 
created  be  filled  up  by  a  total  neglect  among 
those  who  know  me. — 

I  would  send  you  some  Literary  affairs,  but 
I  know  of  none  worthy  of  your  attention. — 

I  am    My  dear  boy 

Affectr  y? 
Henry  Brevoort  Jr 


Edinburgh,  Dec.  p^  1812. 


Your  brother  has  just  announced  to  me 
from  the  opposite  side  of  the  table  that  his 
paper  is  completed  filled,  without  mentioning 
my  name,  I  must  therefore  seize  the  quill  in 
my  own  defence  and  scrawl  a  few  'hasty 
sentences. — Indeed  after  the  voluminous 
epistle  lately  sent  to  you,  I  think  I  stand 
completely  absolved  from  the  charge  of  lazi- 
ness; probably  at  the  expense  of  my  weakness, 
for  I  am  heartily  ashamed  of  the  crude 
contents  of  my  bulky  despatch. — 

But  to  the  point. — I  have  just  written  to 

my  fd.  Lherbette  in  Paris,  to  use  his  utmost 

endeavours   in   proctuing   &   forwarding   to 

New  York  the  different  periodical  Journals  of 

France,  as  well  as  those  of  note  published  on 

the  Continent,  such  for  instance  as  Kotzebue's 

&c. — ^All  these  are  intended  for  the  benefit  of 

"the  Independent  Columbian  Review"  which 

I  am  happy  to  learn  is  soon  to  issue  from  Mul- 



berry  Street  under  the  fostering  care  of  Seth 
Handiside,  Esq',  already  so  advantageously 
known  to  the  reading  world  for  his  spiritted 
eflEorts  in  the  cause  of  letters. — 

At  present  it  will  be  difficult  to  find  fre- 
quent &  safe  conveyances  from  France,  but  I 
rely  on  the  assiduity  of  Lherbette. — From  G. 

B the  D-  will  of  course  do  all  that  can  be 

done  for  you. — 

The  business  of  conducting  the  work  in  ques- 
tion, besides  dissipating  your  habitual  dread  of 
the  Alms  House  will  keep  you  from  running 
up  to  seed  in  these  calamitous  times. —  The 
D-  will  communicate  to  you  our  notions  of  the 
best  mode  of  conducting  the  work,  which  I 
think  will  merit  your  consideration. — 

If  by  bestowing  greater  labour,  the  work  is 
found  to  have  a  wider  circulation  than  the 
printer  contemplated,  you  have  it  in  your 
power  to  increase  your  subsidy  correspond- 
ently — I  think  however  that  for  a  beginning 
the  man  has  been  liberal. — 

VOL.  II. S-  65 


The  last  Edinb:  Review  has  been  chiefly 
written  by  Jeffrey,  as  his  compatriot  Mr 
Brougham  has  been  too  much  occupied  to 
afford  his  usual  assistance.  Its  tone  of  flip- 
pancy, vivacity  and  affected  contempt  for 
others,  is  strikingly  characteristic  of  the 
genius  &  conversation  of  this  little  inky 
Hector. — 

His  opinion  of  the  Society  in  N  Y  & 
Philad:  is  singularly  ludicrous;  I  marvel  that 
the  polished  Town  of  Wapping  was  not 
coupled  with  Glasgow  &  Manchester,  as 
rivalling  us  in  elegance. — The  chief  source  of 
his  American  intelligence  is  a  brother,  who 
resided  a  nttthber  of  years  in  Boston,  moving 
in  a  sphere  which  I  should  judge  authorises  his 
humble  opinions  of  Americ9,n  civilization. — 
We  are  busily  employed  in  various  studies, 
which  are  charmingly  enlivened  by  the  kind 
attentions  of  a  most  intelligent  circle  of  ac- 
quaintances. Our  stay  will  very  likely  be 
prolonged  until  the  i^*  of  Feby,  unless  un- 



expected  events  intervene,  that  may  urge  a 
more  speedy  departure. —  . 

We  attend  the  lectures  of  Prof:  Plaj^air  on 
Nat:  Philo:  Prof:  Jameson,  on  Nat:  History 
&  Geology — D^  Hope  on  Chemistry  &  DT 
Brown,  on  Moral  Philosophy. 

A  few  evenings  ago  we  attended  a  meeting 
of  the  Royal  Society  of  Edinburgh,  where  we 
encountered  a  full  divan  of  the  savans  of 
Scotland. — Prof:  Playfair  read  a  paper  which 
recounted  a  fact  strongly  in  confirmation  of  the 
Huttonian  Theory,  of  which  he  is  the  strong 
pillar  of  support. — This  Theory  supposes  Fire 
to  have  been  the  universal  agent  in  the  decom- 
position of  Matter,  and  is  in  direct  opposition 
to  the  Wemerian  Theory  which  maintains  the 
doctrine  of  Water  as  having  operated  every 
change  upon  the  surface  of  the  Earth. — ^They 
are  distinguished  by  the  names  of  the  Pluto- 
nian &  Neptunian  Systems,  and  have  numerous 
partisans  in  the  learned  world — (See  Prof:  P's 

illustrations  of  the  Huttonian  Theory) 



Prof:  Playf air's  paper  mentioned  the  fact 
of  a  considerable  mass  of  iron  stone,  lately 
discovered  at  some  depth  tinder  Blackness 
Castle  embedded  in  a  large  body  of  stratified 
green  stone,  which  its  magnetic  properties 
proclaim  to  have  been  strongly  ignited — as 
iron  stone  in  its  natural  state  possesses  no 
magnetic  power. — 

Specimens  of  the  latter  were  also  shewn, 
dug  up  in  the  vicinity  of  the  former. 

As  this  fact  can  only  be  explained  by  the 
Huttonian  doctrine,  it  will  be  found  difficult 
to  overthrow  or  disprove  it  by  those  who 
maintain  the  heretical  doctrine  of  Water. — 

Prof:  Playfair  is  decidedly  the  Luminary  of 
Edinburgh ;  he  is  universally  beloved  &  looked 
up  to,  &  is  not  less  distinguished  for  the 
simplicity  of  his  manners  than  by  his  genius 
&  profound  knowledge. — 

He  is  among  our  acquaintance,  and  I  am 
the  more  inclined  to  like  him  from  the  strong 
;resemblance  that  he  bears  to  my  dear  father — ■ 



who  by  the  way,  I  charge  you  not  to  neg- 

We  are  very  much  pleased  with  M" 
Renwick's  sister  in  law  and  her  beautiftil  flock 
of  fairy  children;  I  have  promised  to  be  the 
bearer  of  her  portrait  to  America. — ^The  por- 
trait of  M"  R.  by  Jarvis,*  revived  many  de- 
Hghtftil  recollections. — 

I  beg  my  affect  greeting  to  James  Gouv^ 
&  Peter. 

I  am  my  d-  Washiagton  ever  y? 


*  The  painting  is  reproduced  in  these  volumes. 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i!*  1813 

Edinburgh,  March  i-  18 13. 


I  cannot  sufficiently  express  my  gratitude 
for  your  kind  attention  to  a  wanderer  in 
foreign  lands  without  transgressing  the  sober 
bounds  of  reason,  but  as  the  heralds  of  true 
feeling  are  not  words  I  shall  be  temperate. — 

The  lengthened  period  of  my  absence  from 
America  swells  the  veriest  trifles  into  impor- 
tance, and  occurrences  otherwise  insignificant 
are  now  of  great  pith  &  moment. 

The  recollection  of  dear  home  can  never 

fade  in  my  remembrance,  indeed  the  love  of 

country  (so  far  as  I  have  been  able  to  observe) 

seems  to  animate  the  hearts  of  Americans 

abroad  with  all  the  ardour  of  true  Swiss. — I 

have  been  too  much  jostled  about  the  wide 

world  to  feel  acutely  the  vacant  yearnings  of  a 

stranger  in  any  country  much  less  so  in  this 

one,  where  every  one  strives  to  supply  the 

place  of  absent  friends,  and  banish  the  pains 

of  separation. — 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i^  1813 

But  there  are  moments  when  the  fit  comes 
upon  me  and  tugs  at  my  heart  in  despite  of 
all  the  gaiety  and  the  kindness  that  surround 
me. — 

I  am  however  obhged  to  confess  that  here 
are  girls  not  less  lovely  than  those  of  Gotham 
(I  should  be  loathe  to  swear  to  the  fact)  yet 
their  beauty  is  not  destined  to  shed  its  rays 
upon  me. — ^Here  are  Professors,  learned  as  our 
own  professor  Renwick,  yet  are  they  not 
Renwicks. — ^Here  are  promenades  crowded 
with  rival  beUes,  yet  are  they  not  Broad- 
Ways. — ^Here  are  old  Thebans  with  hats 
quaintly  cocked  and  renowned  soap-boilers 
with  greasy  aprons,  yet  are  they  not  Harry 
Roomes,  nor  oiley  Watkeys. — 

Here  are  shops  and  Hbraries  stored  with 
the  treasures  of  the  learned,  yet  are  they  less 
attractive  than  those  of  the  recondite  Curl 
and  eke  the  critical  Johnny  Forbes. 

Here  too  are  walks  along  streams  conse- 
crated to  the  muses  by  the  melody  of  verse, 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il*  1813 

yet  (ingrate  that  I  am)  commend  me  to  the 
greenwood  banks  of  old  Hudson,  &  the 
tranquil  shades  of  my  native  Bowery. — 

You  see  my  dear  Wash,  how  much  I  long  to 
fill  the  vacant  chair  on  the  opposite  side  of  the 
well  recollected  Table  in  our  private  sanctuary, 
but  let  my  remembrance  fill  all  the  vacancies 
in  your  heart  as  yours  most  truly  does  in 
mine. — 

Ah!  how  often  has  that  fdly  Table  sustained 
your  incumbent  head  of  a  winters  evening, 
and  served  for  a  soimding  board  to  your  nasal 
melody. — 

What  treasures  of  moral  precepts  and  good 
humoured  sallies  has  that  Table  witnessed; 
enough  to  reform  a  guilty  world,  but  alas !  for- 
ever lost  to  an  admiring  posterity. — My  good 
Sir,  pray  you  pardon  this  irruption  of  senti- 
ment, it  has  long  been  accumulating  in  my 
heart,  and  would  have  vent  in  spite  of  all 
opposition. — 

Soon  after  yotir  brother  left  me,  I  was  so 


forttinate  as  to  become  acquainted  with  an 
English  Gentleman  M-  Jukes,  with  whom  I 
have  lodged  ever  since,  and  he  has  supplied 
the  loss  of  your  brother  tolerably  well.  He 
has  been  charg6  d'affaires  in  Persia,  possesses 
various  knowledge,  attends  the  same  lectures 
and  moves  in  nearly  the  same  circle  that  I 

I  shall  therefore  be  induced  to  prolong  my 
stay  in  Edinburgh  until  the  middle  of  April, 
Afterwards  I  shall  join  your  brother  Peter, 
and  execute  some  notable  plans  that  we  have 
in  view. — 

Y^  Brother,  M^*  &  M":^  V  W,  the  boys  & 
myself  are  all  to  meet  in  London  in  the  month 
of  May,  so  that  I  shall  not  take  my  departure 
from  old  England  before  the  middle  of  June 
or  first  of  July. — 

I  am  eager  to  join  you  in  any  scheme  of 
living  that  you  happen  to  like  best;  private 
apartments  would  be  most  desirable  if  they 

*  Irving' s  brother^n-law,  Henry  Van  Wart. 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i?^  1813 

are  to  be  got  either  in  B  Way,  or  in  th6 
vicinity  of  B  Way. — I  shall  not  mind  a  little 
extra  expense  for  the  sake  of  comfort,  for  it  is 
a  blessing  with  which  I  have  now  bec<i)me 
very  familiar. — 

Kemble  is  now  performing  here;  I  have 
seen  him  in  nearly  all  his  great  parts  &  can 
truly  say  with  Cato  "I  am  satisfied." — 
Though  not  a  perfect  actor,  he  is  far  beyond 
any  other  actor  that  I  have  ever  beheld. — I 
am  acquainted  with  him  &  like  him  well;  he 
has  the  manners  of  a  gentleman  and  the  taste 
of  a  scholar  "a  ripe  one  too." — His  acquaint- 
ance is  sought  by  men  of  the  highest  rank  and 
by  men  of  the  highest  genius. — I  dined  in 
company  with  him  at  Walter  Scotts  the  day 
before  yesterday. — The  party  consisted  of 
M^  Henry  Mackenzie,  M^  Jeffrey  &c.,  and 
as  the  conversation  turned  upon  dramatic 
poetry  and  upon  the  art  of  acting  it  was  kept 
up  for  several  hours  with  very  extraordinary- 
ability. — Kemble  sustained  his  part  trium- 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i^l  1813 

phantly  and  entered  into  a  minute  analysis 
of  acting  and  composing  plays,  which  showed 
him  not  less  master  of  the  one  than  of  the 
other. — I  doubt  if  any  person  ever  understood 
the  great  principles  of  the  drama  better  than 
Kemble;  his  distinguished  auditors  listened 
with  sUent  attention  &  approbation  to  his 
masterly  illustrations. — 

Shakespeare  as  you  may  imagine  is  his  idol; 
he  declares  that  after  having  acted  characters 
in  twenty  six  of  his  plays  during  the  period 
of  thirty  years,  he  never  repeats  one  of  them 
without  discovering  some  unobserved  beauty, 
whilst  in  the  parts  of  other  authors  after 
learning  the  words  all  further  study  is  at  an 
end. — M"  Siddons  (I  understand)  has  de- 
clared a  similar  opinion. — I  cannot  enter  into 
the  particulars  of  all  that  was  said,  but  it  was 
one  of  the  most  brilliant  discussions  that  I 
have  ever  witnessed. 

He  is  an  intimate  friend  of  Takna  and 
resided  in  the  house  of  that  great  actor  whilst 



in  Paris;  he  bears  willing  testimony  to  his 
transcendent  merit  beyond  all  his  french 
competitors;  indeed  Talma  stands  unrivaled 
upon  the  french  stage. — In  his  private  deport- 
ment Kemble  pronounces  him  "to  be  grave 
solemn  &  didactic ;  as  every  great  Tragedian 
ought  to  be." — He  was  also  well  acquainted 
with  Clairon,  of  whom  he  got  many  anecdotes 
of  Garrick,  particularly  the  one  of  the  Spittle- 
fields  Weaver  &  the  child  that  dropped  from 
his  arms  into  the  Streets. — 

I  ought  to  have  told  you  that  Scott  is  also  a 
dramatist;  M-  Erskine  has  in  his  possession  a 
manuscript  Tragedy  written  many  years  ago, 
which  is  distinguished  by  many  marks  of  his 
fine  genius. 

Kemble  told  me  that  he  was  perfectly  satis- 
fied with  M^  Coopers  offers,  and  felt  desirous 
of  seeing  America,  but  that  the  War  prevented 
his  emigration.  I  said  that  the  War  would 
prove  no  obstacle  either  to  his  pleasure  or  his 

success — he  thinks  that  his  political  preju- 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i^  1813 

dices  might  occasionally  come  in  contact  and 
render  his  intercourse  with  our  society  danger- 
ous &  disagreeable.^I  ventured  to  assure  him 
of  a  hospitable  reception  from  my  countrymen 
and  strove  to  do  away  with  M^f  Kembles  ap- 
prehensions of  a  sea  voyage  which  she  greatly 
dreads.— I  dwelt  largely  upon  the  intelhgence  & 
liberality  of  our  best  circles  of  society,  of  which 
they  had  been  assured  by  M^  &  M"  Erskine. 

But  I  fear  the  hopeless  duration  of  the  War 
will  deprive  us  of  the  exhibition  of  this  great 
actors  talents.  He  has  a  large  property  in  the 
Covent  garden  establishment,  which  will  prob- 
ably induce  him  to  make  up  the  breach  that 
now  exists  between  them,  and  fix  him  forever 
after  in  London. — He  talks  of  taking  the 
Edinburgh  Theatre  for  the  next  year,  as  the 
wife  of  the  present  Manager,  M^  Henry 
Siddons,  has  just  received  very  tempting 
proposals  from  London. — 

He  goes  to  Dublin  as  soon  as  his  present 
engagement  in  Edinb:  is  terminated. — 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i?!  1813 

I  really  think  we  should  all  like  Kemble 
both  on  &  off  the  Stage — he  occasionally 
pays  too  much  court  to  the  bottle,  but  his 
transgressions  are  not  frequent  nor  are  they 
followed  by  such  disgusting  consequences,  as 
we  have  witnessed  in  the  case  of  poor  George 
Fred:  Cooke  Esq^— 

He  is  now  in  fine  health  &  his  friends  all  say 
that  he  never  acted  better  than  he  now  does, 
altho'  his  face  bears  visible  traces  of  the  de- 
caying hand  of  time. — 

There  is  a  comedian  here  of  the  name  of 

Russell  who  is  the  only  performer  (out  of 

London)  competent  to  supply  the  loss  of  poor 

Twaits. — He  is  about  23  years  of  age,  is  an 

admirable  mimic,  sings  uncommonly  well,  has 

a  great  command  of  features,  with  an  irresist- 

ably  comic  face  and  possesses  true  humour. 

His  line  lies  exclusively  in  low  Comedy,  he 

plays  country  boys  with  great  feeling,  &  is 

equal  to  either  Lister  or  Mathews  in  the 

Character  of  Somno,  in  the  Sleep  Walker — ^with 



the  advantage  of  being  able  to  mutate  Bra- 
ham  &  Incledon  to  the  Kfe. — Such  an  actor 
would  be  a  real  prize  to  either  Price  or  our 
friend  Billy  Wood,  for  I  reckon  him  now  much 
below  what  he  will  be. — 

I  will  ask  him  how  his  engagement  stands  at 
present,  and  let  you  know  what  is  his  answer. 
I  am  so  fond  of  the  pleasures  of  the  Theatre, 
that  I  should  be  glad  in  being  instrumental  to 
the  acqviisition  of  such  an  actor  as  Russell. — 

Yoiu:  brother  desired  me  to  enquire  here  for 

a  purchaser  of  "Dtmlaps Life  of  Cooke" — ^but 

this  is  not  the  proper  meridian  for  such  a  work, 

and  Balantine  referred  the  disposal  of  the 

MS  to  Mess:  Longman  &  C°  at  the  same  time 

expressing  great  confidence  in  the  success  of 

such  a  Work. — Kemble  says  (entre  nous)  that 

Cookes  journal  is  no  better  authority  than  a 

french  bulletin,  as  it  is  a  fact  pretty  notorious 

that  he  was  prone  to  draw  upon  his  drunken 

imagination  for  his  sober  facts. — 

I  fear  the  publication  of  the  work  in  America 

EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i!!  1813 

may  injure  its  sale  in  G  B — It  is  a  thous^ 
pities  that  even  a  moi[e]ty  of  the  MS  had  not 
been  forwarded  by  the  Oath:  Ray,  for  the 
Booksellers  seldom  purchase  without  a  perusal. 
— I  shall  endeavour  in  all  that  lies  in  my  power 
to  promote  the  success  of  the  modest  Dunlap — 

the  subject  possesses  high  interest  in  G  B 

They  all  charge  us  with  killing  the  great 
Cooke. — 

I  sympathize  heartily  in  the  removal  of  our 
worthy  patroon.  I  trust  he  will  be  well  recom- 
pensed for  his  bitter  exile. — This  money  get- 
ting necessity  is  as  you  justly  observe  a  sore 
enemy  in  tearing  assunder  the  bond's  of  society 
— I  fear  its  urgency  is  often  overrated — I  shall 
return  to  its  irksome  toils  with  a  heavy  heart 
I  doubt. — 

I  have  written  to  Gov:  &  shall  be  delighted 
to  learn  how  he  carries  on  the  war  among 
those  scurvy  patriots  of  the  peninsula. 

What  is  my  friend  Peter  about — and  what 

is  James  doing? — I  marvel  they  have  not 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il*  1813 

written  to  me;  my  letters  (you  well  know)  are 
in  common  to  you  all. — May  they  never  feel 
the  pain  of  being  neglected  whilst  in  foreign 
lands;  had  they  felt  it,  I  am  sure  they  would 
not  have  failed  to  devote  an  hour  to  the  grati- 
fication of  one  who  sincerely  loves  them. — • 
But  I  almost  absolve  James  in  consequence  of 
his  attention  to  my  good  old  parents,  with 
whom  Margaret  writes  me  he  has  passed  a 
day,  yet  I  implore  them  both  to  write  to  me. — 
The  HistT  of  "Brother  Jon"  has  been 
republished  in  a  5/  form  in  London — &  M- 
Rosco's  paper  in  Liverpool  has  republished 
them  with  warm  encomiums,  James'  senti- 
ments do  him  honor — ^they  are  free  from  vulgar 
prejudice — ^and  the  disputes  are  managed  with 
a  great  deal  of  htmiour,  yet  I  think  he  might 
have  made  more  of  the  subject  by  taking 
more  time  ia  writing  the  work. — The  answer 
to  it  is  contemptible  in  the  lowest  degree — 
that  Drone  Bristed  has  lost  his  sting,  but  a 
man  is  not  likely  to  have  lost  what  he  never 

VOL.  II. 6.  81 


possessed. — Had  he  wit  enough  to  give  his 
malice  effect,  he  would  be  as  acrid  as  Fluoric 
acid. — The  mighty  D-  Mason  has  singular 
perspicacity  in  finding  out  such  rare  merit, 
as  he  boasts  his  proteg6  possessed  of. — 

I  rejoice  with  you  my  dear  Washington  in 
the  recovery  of  M"  Hoffman — no  human 
being  can  be  better  fitted  for  the  enjoyment 
of  another  &  a  better  world,  yet  none  can  be 
found  more  precious  to  the  hearts  of  her 
friends  in  this  one. — 

I  shall  not  neglect  your  hint  respecting 
old  odd  Books — I  have  already  got  a  number, 
and  shall  get  many  more  in  the  purlieus  of 
London. — 

The  D'  shall  sit  for  his  portrait,  that  I  may 
carry  it  with  me ;  he  never  looked  better,  and  is 
free  from  the  slightest  complaint — ^We  keep 
up  a  regular  fire  through  the  P[ost]  Office. — 

I  am  glad  you  have  a  likeness  of  Miss 

Boothe;  she  is  one  of  the  most  bewitching 

■little   sprights   imaginable   and    I   hope   for 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il^  1813 

many  a  merry  hotir  in  her  company  when 
we  meet  in  London. — 

I  am  now  pretty  well  acquainted  with  the 
Itiminaries  of  Edinburgh  and  confess  that 
among  them  all,  Scott  is  the  man  of  my  choice ; 
he  has  not  a  grain  of  pride  or  affectation  in 
his  whole  composition.  Neither  the  voice  of 
fame,  nor  the  homage  of  the  great  have  altered 
in  the  least  the  native  simplicity  of  his  heart. 
His  days  are  spent  in  the  domestic  endear- 
ments of  an  amiable  family,  and  in  the  society 
of  a  few  select  friends  whom  he  entertains  like 
Maecenas,  and  never  fails  to  delight  by  setting 
an  example  of  perfect  good  humotir  &  harmless 
conviviality. — 

He  never  goes  to  large  parties,  and  never  en- 
tertains them,  indeed  he  seldom  goes  abroad. — 

Jeffrey  excels  him  in  brilliancy  of  conversa- 
tion, but  Jeffrey  always  seems  to  be  acting  a 
studied  part,  and  although  his  social  feelings 
may  be  no  less  warm  than  Scotts,  yet  they  are 

more  or  less  disguised  under  a  species  of 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il'  i8r3 

affectation. — His  foible  is  an  unceasing  effort 
to  act  the  high  finished  gentleman,  conse- 
quently he  is  blessed  with  such  an  immaculate 
degree  of  taste  as  to  contemn  every  thing  in 
the  whole  world  both  moral  &  physical. — His 
friends  (a  limited  band)  esteem  him  a  miracle 
of  perfection,  and  in  point  of  talent  none  will 
be  found  to  contradict  them,  but  as  for  the 
et  ceteras,  I  would  not  give  the  Minstrel  for  a 
wilderness  of  Jeffreys. — 

The  poem  that  I  noticed  in  a  former  Letter, 
"The  bridal  of  Triermain"  is  not  yet  pub- 
lished; the  moment  it  sees  the  light  I  shall 
take  care  to  send  you  a  copy. 

The  author  chooses  to  be  in  the  shade,  but  I 
fancy  the  sunshine  of  fame  will  soon  draw  him 
into  light,  for  the  poem  has  high  merit,  at 
least  the  two  Cantos  which  I  have  been 
permitted  to  see. — 

You  will  find  the  commencement  of  it  in  the 

Edinb:  Annual  Register  (I  think)  for  1809 — 

the  last  published. — 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il*  1813 

The  Town  gives  out  my  friend  William 
Erskine  as  the  author,  but  I  suspect  the  Town 
is  mistaken,  although  I  think  Erskine  com- 
petent to  write  the  Work. — Peter  has  probably 
m.entioned.  Erskine  to  you;  he  is  the  person 
to  whom  Scott  addresses  one  of  his  introduc- 
tions in  Marmion. — I  owe  to  his  particular 
kindness  much  more  than  I  can  possibly  pay; 
but  if  proclaiming  his  excellent  qualities  be 
thought  a  recompense,  I  am  bound  to  offer 
much  more  than  he  would  be  willing  to  ac- 

I  have  sent  so  many  remembrances  to  the 
Renwicks,  that  I  am  ashamed  to  say  anything 
further  on  the  subject. — I  know  M"  Morison 
a  sister  of  M'  Gracie,  a  worthy  old  Lady  whom 
I  often  visit  &  talk  over  N  York  topics,  for 
she  formerly  resided  there. — I  have  defended 
WilHams  Duel  so  stoutly,  that  I  am  not 
without  hope  of  inducing  the  conscientious 
old  Lady  to  acknowledge  that  she  would  have 
done  as  much  under  similar  circumstances. 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il*  1813 

I  might  tell  you  a  great  deal  about  people 
with  whom  I  am  acquainted,  of  republican 
Lords,  of  whom  I  know  two,  but  I  know  you 
will  not  care  a  farthing  about  them,  therefore 
I  shall  let  their  names  &c.  repose  in  obscurity. 
— Indeed  it  becomes  me  to  say  something  of 
others  in  order  to  relieve  the  eternal  recur- 
rence of  I  &  my  renowned  exploits. — 

There  is  one  among  the  society  of  Edin- 
burgh whom  I  honor  in  the  highest  degree — 
I  mean  Professor  Playfair — a  man  who  unites 
the  profundity  of  Newton  with  the  simple  soul 
of  D'Alembert,  whom  it  would  be  as  impossible 
to  describe  as  it  would  be  vain  to  imitate. — 
His  mind  is  lifted  above  all  national  prejudice; 
he  sees  &  encourages  merit  from  any  quarter 
of  the  globe  with  an  equal  eye  of  approbation, 
and  will  condescend  to  receive  the  opinions 
of  a  child — It  is  no  wonder  that  the  Edinb: 
Review  has  acquired  such  renown,  when  one 
considers  that  such  a  man  as  Playfair  lends 
his  mighty  assistance. — You  will  find  in  one 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  li*  1813 

one*  of  the  early  numbers  a  Review  of  the 
system  of  Laplace  written  by  him. — ^Jeffrey 
has  drawn  his  character  with  great  spirit  & 
truth  in  the  Review,  but  I  cannot  direct  you 
to  the  particular  article.  Such  however  was 
Mr  P's  simplicity  &  unconscious  merit  that 
he  asked  Jeffrey  whom  he  had  in  view? — 

Erskine  has  promised  to  furnish  me  with 
the  names  of  nearly  all  the  different  writers 
in  the  Review  since  the  commencement. — ^A 
new  number  will  be  published  in  a  month — 
Jeffreys  various  occupations  often  delays  the 
publication  of  the  work. — 

I  have  agaia  written  to  my  f 'd  Lherbette 
to  request  his  attention  in  fvimishing  you  with 
the  periodical  works  of  Literature  &  Science 
published  in  France — in  order  to  escape  cap- 
ture I  have  requested  him  to  put  them  in 
charge  of  trusty  Captains — ^When  I  return  I 
hope  to  be  of  some  use  in  assisting  you  in 
conductiag  your  work. — 



EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il*  1813 

I  have  sent  you  an  Edinb:  Newspaper  in 
which  is  announced  a  most  important  dis- 
covery in  the  means  of  producing  cold.  The 
writer  is  a  M'  Hutton  of  this  place  (a  Writer 
to  the  Signet) — The  intensity  of  cold  pro- 
duced was  so  great  as  to  congeal  Alcohol — a 
circumstance  which  has  never  before  happened. 
— He  is  now  prosecuting  his  experiments  in 
the  hopes  of  congealing  some  of  the  gases,  and 
as  his  discovery  promises  to  be  beneficial  to  his 
interest,  he  has  not  made  known  the  manner 
of  his  process. — -The  fact  stated  in  the  paper  is 
unquestionably  true. — I  advise  you  to  publish 
the  paper  in  y^  work,  and  also  insert  a  note 
from  either  the  first  or  second  number  of 
Thomson's  Annals  of  Philosophy  which  makes 
known  a  very  recent  discovery  respecting 
Mercury  by  Berzelius  a  distinguished  chemist 
of  Stockholm. — 

Dt  Hope  tells  me  that  Sir  Humphry  Davy 
is  now  making  a  series  of  sucessful  exp'ts  upon 
Fluoric  acid,  the  result  of  which  he  thinks 


EDINBURGH,  MARCH  il^  1813 

will  confirm  his  new  doctrine  respecting 
Chlorine  (oxymuriatic  acid  gas) — ^which  he 
holds  to  be  a  simple  &  distinct  acidifying 
substance,  wholly  uncombined  with  Oxygin 
&  of  a  separate  nature. — This  is  another 
circumstance  of  the  highest  moment  for 
your  journal. — ^This  question  now  agitates  the 
whole  Chemical  World;  for  if  Davy  succeeds 
in  establishing  his  new  doctrine  of  a  dis- 
tinct acidifying  principle  from  Oxygin  the 
whole  chemical  nomenclature  must  undergo 
a  revolution. 

Commend  me  to  Ann  &  Charles  &  aU  my 
dear  fds. 

Your  account  of  the  two  Kings  of  Brentford 
in  a  Letter  to  your  brother  (which  he  sent  me 
for  perusal)  made  me  laugh  heartily. — 

When  a  nation  is  agitated  the  scum  which 

has  long  lain  concealed  at  the  bottom  in 

noxious  obscurity  rises  to  the  surface  &  is 

apt  to  offend  the  nostrils  of  modest  men. — 

I  charge  you  to  write  me  immediately  on 

EDINBURGH,  MARCH  i!*  1813 

receipt  of  this  Letter — and  unless  you  write 
at  great  length,  I  do  not  care  about  what,  I 
shall  construe  it  into  a  disrelish  for  my  long 
epistles. — 

God  bless  you  my  d'  fellow! 



LONDON,  JUNE  24*11  18 13 

London,  June  24—  18 13. 


My  inconsiderate  promises  of  returning 
home  have  for  some  time  past  deprived  me  of 
the  pleasure  of  any  direct  communications 
from  my  friends  in  America  &  except  through 
your  brothers  letters  (who  I  am  happy  to  say 
is  still  my  companion)  I  should  be  entirely 
ignorant  of  their  welfare. — 

We  have  been  in  London  since  the  lo*-''  in- 
stant &  have  every  reason  to  be  gratified  with 
our  reception. — ^Among  the  persons  who  have 
interested  us  most  are  Sir  James  Mackintosh 
Miss  Joanna  Baillie,  Wf  Barbauld  &  M^  T 
Campbell,  to  all  of  whom  we  brought  letters  of 
introduction. — I  have  also  had  the  pleasure 
of  meeting  Miss  Edgeworth  frequently;  she 
left  town  a  few  days  ago  for  Ireland  after 
having  completely  gone  the  rounds  of  fashion 
&  admiration. — 

Madam  De  Stael  has  just  arrived  from 

Sweden  &  is  likely  to  meet  with  a  recep- 


LONDON,  JUNE  24^1  1813 

tion  from  the  beau  Monde  not  less  dis- 

I  saw  her  last  evening  at  Drury  lane;  she 
has  a  very  reverend  black  beard,  and  features 
that  correspond  to  it;  but  I  forget  that  you 
have  seen  her. — M"  Siddons  played  Lady 
Randolph  for  the  benefit  of  the  Theatrical 
fvmd.  This  is  the  third  time  that  I  have 
had  the  good  fortune  to  witness  her  playing, 
besides  hearing  her  read  the  whole  play  of 
Hamlet. — 

I  have  not  words  to  express  the  sublimity 
of  her  performance  last  evening;  the  whole 
audience  were  completely  at  her  mercy,  and 
the  Theatre  echoed  with  sobs  &  shrieks  and 
bravos. — She  has  been  strongly  solicited  to 
return  to  the  stage  &  report  makes  her  en- 
gaged to  act  a  given  number  of  nights  next 
season — that  is,  for  her  own  emoUxunent. — 

I  had  another  Theatrical  treat  some  nights 

ago   at    Listons    benefit — Hamlet    Travesty 

was  acted — Ophelia  by  M^    Liston,  Hamlet 


LONDON,  JUNE  24th  18 13 

by  Mathews — Nothing  could  be  more  ridicu- 
lous— ^Hamlet  addressed  the  Ghost  by  the 
tune  of  "Oh,  Miss  Baillie!"— &  "To  be"  etc. 
was  set  to  a  filthy  tune  accompanied  with 
his  own  performance  on  the  Violin. — Sweet 
Ophelia  presented  the  King  &  Queen  with  a 
bunch  of  parsnips  &  a  head  of  Cabbage, 
reserving  for  her  own  munching  a  stout 
Turnip. — 

Laertes  &  Hamlet  contested  for  his  Majes- 
ties Wager  a  la  Cribb,  &  poor  Laertes  (Little 
Simmons)  got  soundly  pimimelled; — ^gloves 
were  substituted  for  foils. — 

I  beg  you  to  mention  in  order  to  allay  the 

little  jealousies  that  might  arise  or  may  have 

arisen  in  the  fair  bosoms   of  my  cotmtry- 

women — that  the*  five  distinguished  members 

of  the  blue  stocking  sisterhood  ( I  forgot  Mad : 

D'Arblay  who  is  now  in   London)   are  all 

remarkably  dwarfish — ^if    all    their   personal 

advantages  were  combined  they  would  not 

furnish    out    one    tolerably   pretty   woman. 


LONDON,  JUNE  24^  1813 

Such  is  the  rigid  impartiahty  of  nature  in 
the  distribution  of  her  high  attributes. 

Mad:  De  Stael  has  a  new  work — Mis  Ed: 
has  left  one  of  her  immortal  ofiEspring  in  the 
hands  of  a  Bookseller,  &  Mad:  D'Arblay  is 
putting  the  finishing  hand  to  a  fourth  novel — 
who  is  to  win  the  race  of  popularity  I  will  not 
be  so  bold  as  to  predict. — 

De  Stael  is  certainly  the  prancing  Arabian, 
with  a  rain  bow  neck  and  flaming  mane — Edg : 
a  tough  little  Irish  poney  accustomed  to  boggy 
roads  and  mail  coaches  &  sure  never  to  fly  the 
course. — ^As  to  D'Arblay  she  is  something 
between  both,  but  I  do  not  think  she  will  come 
in  first. — 

We  go  •  to   Birmingham  next  week  after 

visiting  some  interesting  spots  in  the  vicinity 

of  London — ^We  have  a  letter  to  deliver  to  D? 

Her[s]chell  whose  family  we  already  know. — 

Sir  J  Mackintosh  is  a   most    accomplished 

man  indeed — His  Hist^  goes  forward  slowly 

owing  to  rather  delicate  health.    He  comes  into 


LONDON,  JUNE  24th  1813 

Parliament  immdy  but  I  fear  his  eloquence 
will  be  too  refined  for  the  wrangling  contests 
of  S-  Stephens  Chapel. 

I  wish  ardently  that  the  Gov-  would 
appoint  him  minister  to  the  U  States. — 
He  will  necessarily  be  obliged  in  the  course  of 
his  His^  to  write  an  account  of  our  revolution 
— ^his  views  of  that  glorious  event  are  lofty  & 
enlightened,  &  I  have  no  doubt  he  will  do 
ample  justice  to  the  cause  of  liberty, — & 
America. — ^And  now  having  made  you  slightly 
acquainted  with  these  eminent  personages,  let 
me  have  a  higher  gratification  in  making  you 
personally  known  to  one  of  the  most  distin- 
guished literary  ornaments  of  this  Country- — 
I  mean  Francis  Jeffrey  Esq^  of  Edinburgh  the 
Conductor  of  the  Review. — 

He  is  to  embark  from  Liverpool  on  the 
Ship  Hercules  by  the  5  of  next  month  for 
Boston  accompanied  by  his  brother  M-  John 
J.  for  the  purpose  of  settling  some  domestic 
concerns. — I    am   deeply   indebted   to   him, 


LONDON,  JUNE  24*!!  1813 

both  for  his  hospitality  to  me  in  Edinb:  as 
well  as  for  the  letters  he  gave  me  to  persons 
in  London;  I  have  endeavoured  to  repay  him 
by  giving  him  a  letter  to  you,  one  to  M' 
Hoffman,  one  to  our  friend  M"  Renwick 
(who  is  his  namesake)  &  another  to  Judge 
Van  Ness,  besides  many  others  to  different 
parts  of  America. — 

I  enjoin  it  upon  you  all  to  receive  him  in  the 
most  friendly  manner,  so  that  I  may  make 
some  returns  to  him. — Try  to  make  a  match 
between  him  &  Miss  Wilkes;  possibly  the 
affair  may  not  be  beyond  the  control  of  the 

I  really  cannot  fix  upon  any  man  in  this 

Country  whose  acquaintance  is  better  worth 

cultivating  than   M'  J You  will   find 

him  full  of  the  most  precise  as  well  as  universal 

knowledge  of  men  &  things  on  this  side  the 

Water,  which  he  will  delight  to  communicate 

as  copiously  as  you  please. — ^You  will  do  well 

to  see  as  much  of  him  as  you  can;  he  will  be 


LONDON,  JUNE  24th  1813 

glad  to  make  friends  with  you  &  after  you 
have  become  reconciled  to  somewhat  of  an 
artificial  manner,  you  will  find  him  one  of  the 
most  sprightly  &  best  tempered  men  imagin- 

I  have  not  given  him  Letters  to  James  or  to 
Peter;  you  will  of  course  render  that  ceremony 
unnecessary  by  asking  them  to  call  upon  him 
with  you. — 

As  his  introductory  Letters  will  be  chiefly 
to  persons  connected  with  the  Federal  party  I 
wish  you  to  make  him  known  to  both  sides — 
It  is  essential  that  Jeffrey  may  imbibe  a  just 
estimate  of  the  U  States  &  its  inhabitants,  he 
goes  out  strongly  biassed  in  our  favor,  and 
the  influence  of  his  good  opinion  upon  his 
return  to  this  Country  would  go  far  to  efface 
the  calumnies  &  the  absurdities  that  have  been 
laid  to  our  charge  by  ignorant  travellers. — 
Persuade  him  to  visit  Washington  if  Congress 
has  not  risen  &  by  all  means  to  see  the  falls  of 
Niagara;  the  obstacles  which  the  war  may 

VOL.  II. — 7-  97 

LONDON,  JUNE  24th  18 13 

oppose  may  be  easily  overcome,  &  at  all  events 
he  may  see  them  without  even  crossing  into 
Canada. — 

As  his  business  is  wholly  of  a  private  na- 
ture, neither  political  nor  commercial  I  hope 
Government  will  not  limit  his  motions. 

■  Your  brother  has  also  given  M-  J —  letters 
to  you. — 

Mr.  De  Kantzow  (the  Ambassador  from 
Sweden)  who  is  so  good  as  to  take  charge  of 
this,  has  a  letter  of  introduction  to  you  from 
your  brother. — His  wife  &  two  daughters  ac- 
company him;  I  have  given  them  a  Letter  to 
John  Jacob. — 

They  are  very  amiable  people  &  you  will 

perform  a  charitable  service  to  them  by  aiding 

the  first  impressions  made  by  the  Country  in 

which  they  are  in  future  to  reside. — M-  De 

Kantzow  seems  a  very  good  old  gentleman  &  if 

he  had  any  hand  in  the  Treaty  lately  concluded 

between  this  Country  &  Sweden,  he  needs  no 

higher  elogium  on  his  diplomatic  abilities. — 


LONDON,  JUNE  24*  1813 

M"  De  K  &  her  daughters  are  very  affa- 
ble &  well  bred — ^They  have  a  packet  for 
Margaret  (directed  tinder  cover  to  Capt, 
Whetten) — I  wish  she  may  be  furnished  with 
an  opportunity  of  acknowledging  their  polite- 

Before  I  left  Edinburgh  I  presented  Walter 
Scott  with  a  copy  of  the  second  Ed :  of  Knicker- 
bocker, in  return  for  some  very  rare  Books 
that  he  gave  me  respecting  the  early  History 
of  New  England. — I  enclose  you  a  Letter  that 
I  received  from  him  since;  you  must  under- 
stand his  words  literally  for  he  is  too  honest 
&  too  sincere  a  man  to  compliment  any 
person. — 

We  are  very  anxious  to  see  Charles  King 
who  we  understood  has  arrived  at  Lisbon 
but  we  fear  that  he  will  not  get  to  London 
before  we  take  our  departure. 

Our  last  Letters  from  Gov :  &  the  Supercargo 

reported  favourably  of  the  health  &  spirits 

of  these  estimable  personages. — Harry  is  the 


LONDON,  JUNE  24*  18 13 

admiration   of   the   black   eyed    Donnas    of 

I  hardly  know  what  to  say  about  the  period 
of  my  returning  home — perhaps  some  time 
in  the  month  of  August. — The  Continental 
scheme  grows  less  likely;  the  expense  my  dear 
boy  the  expense  frightens  me. — 

Mere  Existence  in  this  plentiful  Land  is  at 
a  fearful  purchase,  so  that  my  purse  begins  to 
exhibit  alarming  symptoms  of  decay. — 

M'  Payne*  has  acquitted  himself  most 
successfully  in  the  characters  of  Nerval  & 
Romeo — Your  brother  will  send  you  particu- 

I  beg  my  most  cordial  remembrance  to  all 
our  friendly  circle. — 

I  am     My  d^  I— affect  y? 

H.  B. 

*  John  Howard  Payne. 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2^  181 8 

New  York,  Oct:  2i  1818. 


I  send  you  a  minute  statement  of  a  dis- 
gusting dispute  &  its  consequences  forced 
upon  me  by  a  person  named  Harvey  Strong — 
You  will  perceive  it  to  have  been  one  of  these 
unavoidable  occurences  incident  to  men  of 
the  most  imoffending  dispositions. — I  wish 
you  to  set  the  affair  in  its  true  light  to  any 
who  may  have  noticed  the  filthy  advertise- 
ments of  Strong  in  our  Newspapers — The 
statement  is  enclosed  to  M-  Richards,  who 
will  peruse  it,  &  transmit  it  to  you. — ^Possibly 
you  may  think  I  have  treated  this  vile  brawl 
with  disproportionate  importance — ^but  I  can- 
not rest  until  the  calumny  is  effectually 
refuted. — The  sentence  of  the  Court  &  Jury  in 
distinctly  acquitting  me  from  every  imputa- 
tion •  of  Strong,  was  decisive  as  to  public 
opinion  in  New  York  &  elsewhere — ^but  I  am 
happy  to  say  that  without  this  formality, 
those  who  had  the  slightest  knowledge  of  me, 

NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2§  1818 

regarded  M-  Strong's  advertisement  as  the 
libels  of  a  miscreant  who  had  been  chastised  in 
the  manner  he  deserved. — 

The  fine  of  2^0$  imposed  by  M-  Golden 
exclusively  for  a  breach  of  the  peace,  was 
considered  by  every  person  who  attended  to 
the  trial,  as  exorbitant  &  unwarranted  by  the 
offence,  (notwithstanding  the  very  handsome 
concessions  &c.,  &c.  made  to  me  in  delivering^ 
the  sentence  of  the  Court.) — 

The  affair  derived  its  sole  importance  from 
the  base  conduct  of  our  editors,  especially 
Mr  Noah,  of  the  Advocate,  whose  apology  was 
not  a  sufficient  atonement  for  his  misconduct. 
— If  every  blackguard  who  can  pay  for  the 
insertion  of  an  advertisement,  may  be  per- 
mitted to  calumniate  any  person  in  the  com- 
munity, the  peace  of  society  is  at  an  end — 
The  laws  of  the  land,  as  expounded  by  M' 
Golden,  inflict  250  $  penalty  for  chastising  a 
person  with  every  circumstance  of  justifica- 
tion— Yet    these    laws    yield    no    adequate 

NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2^  1818 

redress  for  the  defilement  of  a  mans  reputa- 
tion in  the  public  prints — But  I  will  not  add 
another  word  to  a  subject  which  has  ter- 
minated so  entirely  as  I  could  have  wished, 
and  which  has  already  sunk  into  oblivion — 

You  will  perceive  that  another  dispute 
somewhat  analogous  to  mine  was  settled 
lately  on  the  Jersey  shore. — That  delicate 
arbiter  of  honor  "the  public"  is  I  believe  now 
"  amply  satisfied  with  the  meeting  which  took 
place  between  Perry  &  Heath  and  by  Perry's 
receiving  the  fire  of  his  adversary  with  a  deter- 
mination of  not  returning  it. — This  unhappy 
lapse  of  temper  and  its  consequences  have 
been  festering  in  the  breast  of  Perry — He  is 
now  enabled  to  stand  erect  in  all  the  glory  of 
his  well  earned  reputation. — 

Paulding  is  still  with  us — Certain  gossips 

report   that   his   wedding   cake   is   actually 

manufacturing. — I  take  it  for  granted  he  will 

shortly  be   married. — His  new   poem,  "The 

Backwoodsman  "  has  not  yet  been  published — 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2^  1818 

he  intends  it  as  an  experiment  upon  the  public 
taste,  of  a  work  composed  exclusively  of  local 
feelings  &  manners — but  he  is  by  no  means 
sanguine  of  success. — 

We  have  resolved  to  pass  the  winter  at 
Bloomingdale — ^my  Wife  wills  it  so — ^and  I 
concur  without  much  reluctance — She  bids 
me  assure  you  of  her  kindest  regards. — ^You 
can  scarcely  conceive  how  quietly  and  cheer- 
fully we  live — Life  seems  to  have  doubled  its 
interest  by  my  new  ties — ^Without  adopting 
any  Utopian  scheme  of  happiness,  or  indeed 
any  shows  whatever,  we  go  on  our  way  re- 
joicing, and  find  our  chiefest  sources  of 
enjoyment  at  our  own  fireside. 

About  ten  days  since  we  had  a  grand 
christening — ^We  brought  five  children  to  M^ 
Jarvis  with  a  numerous  attendance  of  grand- 
fathers, mothers,  etc. — Our  friend  M"  Ren- 
wick  was  the  proudest  of  the  group,  inasmuch 
as  she  furnished  three  of  the  five  children, 

viz.   one  of  Margaret's   &   two  of  Bob's. — 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2^  18 18 

You  probably  know  that  Gary  is  to  be  married 
in  January  next,  at  Charleston,  to  Miss  Pyne, 
a  Lady  every  way  worthy  of  his  choice — He 
has  purchased  a  House  in  Chamber  Street. — 
My  Lord  March  is  to  be  coupled  at  the  same 
place,  to  M"  Hutchinson  a  pretty  senti- 
mental Widow  with  two  spoiled  children  and 
a  comfortable  estate. — ^Another  of  the  Miss 
Pynes  was  married  a  year  or  two  since  to 
Colonel  Bankhead,  who  I  think  I  have  heard 
you  speak  of  as  of  your  circle  of  acquaintance 
when  in  Paris. — 

I  met  the  Vice  President  the  day  before 
yesterday,  he  seemed  rejoiced  to  hear  of  you 
&  expressed  a  strong  wish  that  you  might 
speedily  return  home — I  hardly  dare  to  press 
this  subject  further —  but  I  do  with  all  my 
soul  wish  you  may  come  back  to  us. — I  learn 
from  Paulding  that  your  Brother  W?  has 
lately  made  very  strong  representations  to 
you,  &  I  sincerely  hope  you  will  yield  to 

them.— ^ 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2^  181 8 

M-  Tavish  (with  his  family)  has  just 
passed  on  to  Baltimore — ^he  is  to  return  im- 
mdy  to  Montreal  &  join  Simon  M^Gillivray, 
afterwards  they  are  to  come  to  N  York  & 
embark  for  Liverpool  about  the  middle  of 
NovT — M-  Tavish  goes  on  family  affairs  to 
the  Highlands  of  Scotland. 

Jack  Nicolson  passed  some  time  among 
us  lately — ^he  is  still  desperately  bent  upon 
inflicting  on  himself  the  blessings  of  Matri- 
mony— ^but  Cupid  invariably  protests  against 
the  deed. — 

George  Johnston  still  governs  the  Colony 

&   maintains   his   usual   ascendency   in   the 

Mother    Country — Miss    Bradish    (it    is    a 

mighty  secret)  they  say  is  engaged  to  Major 

Biddle,  a  brother  of  the  gallant  little  Captain 

— I  have  no  doubt  the  report  will  prove  true. 

Charles  Nicholas'  mother  died  lately  and  I 

understand  left  about  30,000  $  to  the  surprise 

of  her  fds. — 

The  Swartwouts  have  been  at  the  lowest  ebb 

NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2^  1818 

of  fortune — but  the  appointment  of  Rob*  to 
the  Navy  agency  (vice  BuUen  deceased)  has 
shed  a  ray  of  hope  upon  their  future  prospects. 
— Their  speculation  remains  a  dead  weight 
upon  their  hands,  and  any  partial  relief  from 
their  fds  would  only  be  engulphed  in  this 
vortex. — 

Gouv:  Kemble  is  getting  on  bravely  with 
his  foundary,  and  I  doubt  not  will  make  it  a 
profitable  concern — My  brother  John  is  his 
right  hand  man,  and  gives  promise  of  becom- 
ing a  very  clever  fellow. — 

Kemble  has  a  most  convenient  mansion 
nearly  completed,  and  intended  for  the  recep- 
tion of  his  fds  &  associates  in  the  foundary 
enterprize — He  has  reserved  an  apartment 
expressly  for  you. — 

And  now  my  dear  Irving  having  exhausted 
my  mind  of  all  that  can  directly  interest  you — 
I  say  vale  &  God  bless  you! 

H.  B.  y. 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  2I  1818 

I  have  not  mentioned  my  friend  Peter,  be- 
cause when  I  write  to  you  I  conceive  that  I 
am  addressing  you  both — 

I  hear  with  great  satisfaction  that  M' 
Van  Wart  is  reistablished  in  a  prosperous 
business — 


BLOOMINGDALE,  SEPT.  9th  18 19 
Bloomingdale,  Sept.  g-  i8ig. 


Just  as  I  was  preparing  to  answer  your 
Letter  of  10  July,  I  had  the  pleasure  to  receive 
by  the  Amity  y^  Letter  of  the  28  July. — 
.  I  hope  we  shall  soon  receive  the  4-  number, 
which  you  state  was  nearly  completed. — 
The  3-  number  will  be  published  on  Monday 
the  1 3-. — ^we  were  retarded  a  few  days  by 
not  getting  the  paper  from  M-  Thomas — 
The  orders  for  Boston,  Phil :  &  Baltimore  were 
forwarded  this  day,  in  order  that  the  publica- 
tion may  be  cotemporanious,  a  point  very 
much  insisted  on  by  the  Craft. — The  edition  of 
the  first  number  has  all  been  sold ;  of  the  2?  N? 
only  150  Copies  remain  unsold — The  demand 
rises  in  every  quarter. — ^The  2?  Edit:  of  N?  i 
will  be  put  to  press  next  week;  your  correc- 
tions shall  be  carefully  inserted,  and  the 
pimctuation  somewhat  diminished.  It  was 
not  owing  to  your  MS,  but  to  the  scrupulous- 
ness of  Van  Winkle — I  had  made  objections 


BLOOMINGDALE,  SEPT.  9«1  1819 

to  it  for  the  reasons  you  have  stated.  The 
2?  Edit:  of  N?  i  will  be  put  to  press  i'n  a  few 
days.  The  2?  Edit:  of  N?  2  will  also  follow 
that  of  N?  I ,  as  soon  as  possible.  I  am  truly 
delighted  to  find  you  were  pleased  with  the 
style  of  your  reappearance — I  think  you  fully 
entitled  to  it — ^besides  it  was  necessary  in 
order  to  justify  the  price  of  the  work. — Long 
ere  this,  you  must  have  rec?  my  Letters  with 
the  Copies  of  N°'  i  &  2,  and  I  take  it  for 
granted  that  my  representations  (which  I 
assure  you  are  very  conscientious)  will  en- 
courage you  to  exertion.  It  is  a  point  uni- 
versally agreed  upon,  that  your  work  is  an 
honor  to  American  literature  as  well  as  an 
example  to  those  who  aspire  to  a  correct  & 
eloquent  style  of  composition. — The  Book- 
sellers have  so  far  as  we  have  gone,  punctually 
complied  with  their  engagements,  &  I  have 
reason  to  believe  that  they  will  continue  to 
do  so. — 

I  hope  you  have  drawn  upon  me  for  the 


BLOOMINGDALE,  SEPT.  9th  1819 

profits  of  the  Work,  &  that  you  will  continue 
to  do  so. — 

By  the  p  Monroe  I  have  forwarded  to 
Richards  five  copies  of  N°  3 — The  price  is 
printed  62^  Cents  on  the  cover,  instead  of 
75  Cents — ^this  error  was  corrected  after  a 
few  copies  had  been  struck  off.  I  have  also 
inclosed  the  two  last  N°^  of  Salmagundi. 
P,  is  making  sad  work  of  it. — He  applied  to 
me  for  hints  for  a  paper  on  the  subject  of  my 
whimsical  old  father  &  the  economy  of  his 
feathered  kingdom. — I  could  not  find  the 
papers  that  I  had  written  on  the  subject  some 
years  since;  He  has  however  completed  an 
essay  from  several  hints  given  him,  which  will 
do  pretty  well. — 

I  could  not  well  refuse  him  "in  his  utmost 

need, "  but  I  would  rather  he  had  not  broached 

the  subject,  as  I  did  intend  at  some  future 

time  to  have  filled  up  the  outline  myself; 

iadeed  I  would  have  done  it  for  him,  on  the 

present  occasion,  had  he  requested  me,  but 


BLOOMINGDALE,  SEPT.  gth  1819 

he  seems  resolved  upon  literary  suicide — ^in 
other  words  to  destroy  himself  solely  by  his 
own  means. — I  am  really  astonished  how  he 
can  possibly  write  so  much  below  his  natural 
capacity,  and  not  perceive  it.  I  suspect  he 
regrets  his  rash  attempt,  but  as  he  has  not 
chosen  to  say  as  much,  I  cannot  take  upon 
myself  to  advise  him  frankly. — His  wife  is 
very  well,  and  has  lately  given  birth  to  a  son. — 
I  think  you  are  mistaken  in  supposing  your 
brother  W  dissatisfied  respecting  the  Wash- 
ington affair — I  had  a  long  talk  with  him  a 
day  or  two  since,  in  the  course  of  which  he 
adverted  to  that  business,  and  seemed  rather 
to  have  yielded  to  the  justness  of  your  objec- 
tions.— ^He  expressed  great  remorse  at  his 
long  silence  to  you,  and  resolved  to  take  pen 
in  hand  and  write  you  a  long  epistle  by  way 
of  atonement. — He  retains  his  old  habit  of 
burthening  himself  with  a  world  of  unneces- 
sary cares  and  vexations — In  walking  the 
street,    he   seems   literally   bent   downward, 

BLOOMINGDALE,  SEPT.  9th  18 19 

with  at  least  a  dozen  gratuitous  years — yet 
his  heart  is  as  mellow  and  his  sensibilities 
just  as  acute  as  ever. — 

He  was  very  much  disappointed  in  the 
Consulship  of  M — s.  The  place  I  believe 
had  been  kept  in  reserve  for  the  new  occupant. 
— I  wish  with  all  my  heart,  something  better 
than  this  may  present  itself. 

You  desire  some  particulars  of  my  family 
economy  &c — I  hardly  know  how  to  descend 
to  partictdars — each  day  seems  to  glide  away 
with  nearly  the  same  sources  of  occupation, 
without  the  slightest  wish  for  novelty — ^We 
reside  beyond  the  limits  of  new  friends,  and 
our  old  ones  number  very  few  indeed. — Our 
son  is  of  course  a  most  important  personage 
in  the  family — Books  and  music  are  the  next 
sources  of  comfort  &  amusement,  besides  a 
garden,  &c,  &c. — But  I  am  determined  not  to 
let  you  into  the  arcana  of  our  affairs  until  you 
come  to  us,  and  be  fairly  initiated. — ^We  are 
resolved   to  marry  you  at  once,  and   then 

VOL.  II. — 8.  113 


of  course  by  the  aid  of  our  example,  every 
other  consequence  will  naturally  follow. — M'. 
Gracie  threw  out  a  hint  that  you  might  dis- 
appoint us  in  this  scheme  by  adventuring  for 
yourself  in  England;  but  M'  G  (you  know)  is 
a  very  profane  joker. — 

The  Renwicks  are  as  well  and  happy  as  it  is 
possible  for  them  to  be  under  the  misfortunes 
which  have  beset  them — J  &  Robert  will  get 
through  their  difficulties  within  two  months — 
they  are  at  present  on  the  limits — James 
bears  all,  with  his  accustomed  calmness  & 
resignation — He  comes  Home  every  Sunday. 
— My  brother  the  Capt  has  just  returned  from 
India,  very  well  &  in  fine  spirits. — My  wife  is 
very  solicitous  of  passing  the  approaching 
winter  at  Charleston — I  have  not  yet  con-, 
eluded  upon  leaving  New  York. — 

The  City  is  very  much  alarmed  respecting 

Yellow  fever,  but  from  the  best  information 

I  can  obtain,  there  is  no  real  foundation  for 



BLOOMINGDALE,  SEPT.  9th  18 19 

M"  Banch  is  in  our  neighborhood,  looking 
very  ill — ^it  is  feared  of  consumption. — Louisa 
Govemeur  (they  say)  is  engaged  to  MJ 
Cambreling — ^Young  Golden  is  shortly  to  pair 
off  with  Fanny  Wilkes. — 

M":  Tavish  is  arrived  by  the  Amity — I  am 
going  to  Town  in  the  morning  to  see  him. — I 
hope  he  has  seen  much  of  you  in  England. — 
My  Wife  desires  her  kindest  regards. — ^Her 
Son  understands  French  perfectly — ^but  has 
not  yet  ventured  to  speak.  He  has  the 
benefit  of  a  French  nurse. 

I  have  hardly  room  to  say  that  I  am  affects 


H.  B. 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  9!}}  1819 
New  York,  November  g-  181Q. 


The  4*.''  N?  will  be  published  tomorrow — • 
I  have  given  Ebenezer  5  Copies  of  it,  to  be 
forwarded  in  the  Albion  by  a  private  hand. — 
I  have  rec*?  your  Letter  of  the  21  Sep:  with 
corrected  copies  of  N°  i  &  2. — ^We  have  just 
got  40  Reams  of  paper  from  M^  Donaldson 
made  by  contract  at  7  doU^  payable  in  6 
months — the  quality  pleases  me  so  much  that 
I  intend  to  give  him  another  contract  for  85 
Reams  to  be  manufac^  immediately,  and  to  be 
paid  for  in  6  &  9  months.  Paper  cannot  be 
made  in  the  Winter,  and  we  shall  want  by  the 
month  of  March  75  Reams  for  2^.  editions  of 
1-2  &  3  and  50  Reams  for  N°  5  &  6. — The 
printer  will  put  the  2  edit^  to  press  on  Friday. 
— Pray  send  a  corrected  copy  of  No.  3? — 

A  few  days  si*nce  a  letter  was  addressed  to 

me  by  M^  Wharton  of  Phil:  at  the  request 

of    M'   Thomas,    proposing   that    your   fds 

should  redeem  iioo  Copies  of  the  3?  Edit:  of 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  9*!?  181 9 

Knickerbocker  which  had  been  assigned  by 
M'  Thomas  upon  condition  of  their  being 
relinquished  to  you,  after  paying  the  demands 
of  the  printer  papermaker  &c  amounting  to 
^1000.  (which  am*  would  be  due  in  a  few 
months). — The  Edit:  you  know  consisted 
of  1500  Copies — after  consulting  with  your 
brother  William — I  answered  M*:  W's  Let- 
ter, by  stating  the  willingness  of  y^  fds  to 
comply  with  his  terms — and  (as  his  Letter 
was  somewhat  ambiguous)  desired  to  know 
whether  the  400  deficient  copies  were  to  be 
paid  for  by  M^  Thomas,  or  deducted  from  the 
1000^ — He  has  not  replied  to  my  Letter,  but 
no  doubt,  you  are  to  look  to  M^  Thomas,  for 
the  400  Copies,  which  he  has  sold,  and  of 
which  I  do  not  believe  you  will  receive  a  single 
dollar. — 

Before  I  leave  N  York  for  Charleston,  which 
is  fixed  for  the  20*?"  I  will  again  see  your 
brother  William  and  request  him  to  redeem 

the  HOC  Copies. — 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  gtJ?  1819 

As  M^  Thomas  has  always  professed  that  in 
publishing  the  3^  edit :  he  acted  solely  as  your 
agent  &  for  your  benefit,  without  any  inten- 
tion of  making  deductions  for  his  services — ■ 
I  look  upon  this  transaction  as  a  breach  of 
faith  towards  you — and  that  he  is  no  longer 
entitled  to  the  indulgence  of  vending  the  S, 
Book,  exclusive  of  the  hazard  you  run  of  losing 
500  Copies  of  each  Number. — The  500  Copies 
of  N?  4  will  therefore  be  sold  to  Mathew 
Cary  &  Son,  instead  of  M'  Thomas — I  shall 
explain  to  him  my  motives  for  this  proceeding 
— Your  brothers  (to  whom  I  have  made  known 
the  affair)  are  decidedly  in  favor  of  this 
change. — ^At  present  Mr.  Thomas*  ace*  for 
the  S  B  is  nearly  balanced. — 

After  distributing  the  4*?"  Number — I  shall 

settle  accounts  with  the  purchasers,  as  well 

as  with  the  printer,  and   advise  you  of  the 

Balance  in  your  favor,  which  will  be  payable 

within  90  days. — Your  brother  Ebenezer  will 

then  take  charge  of  N?  5  and  the  2^  Editions 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  9!!?  18 19 


— I  shall  give  him  every  sort  of  information 
as  to  the  manner  of  managing  the  Work.^ 
When  I  return  in  March,  I  will  cheerfully 
resiune  the  guardianship  of  your  Work. — 

Pray  write  y^  brother  Ebez^  whether  you 
wiU  have  4000  instead  of  2000  Copies,  printed, 
of  the  succeeding  ntunbers.  The  last  2000 
may  be  marked  2  Edit:  for  the  sake  of  uni- 
formity.— By  this  arrangement  you  will  save 
45  $  (so  the  printer  assured  me  at  the  com- 
mencement of  the  work)  on  each  Number — on 
the  other  hand  you  will  be  deprived  of  the 
opportunity  of  correcting  the  2  Edit?  which 
you  may  deem  equivalent  to  the  additional 
expense. — The  article  "Jn?  Bull"  is  in  the 
hands  of  your  Brother.  Your  Letter  of  the 
9  Sep'  by  the  Atlantic  has  just  reached  me. 
I  am  rejoiced  to  find  you  so  well  pleased  with 
the  S  Book  &c,  &c. — I  cannot  help  remarking 

on  what  you  say  respecting  Miss  G that 

to  the  best  of  my  recollection  I  paid  her 

brother  $2  for  copying  Philip. — The  article  in 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  9^^  18 19 

the  E  Post  was  written  by  me,  at  Coleman's 
request,  and  published  under  the  Editorial 
head  as  his  own — dont  let  this  lessen  your 
good  will  towards  the  Squire,  for  he  assured 
me  that  the  article  expressed  exactly  what  he 
felt  &  would  have  written.  Had  it  been 
otherwise  depend  upon  it  he  would  have 
shaped  the  notice  to  his  own  liking. — I  hope 
you  saw  the  criticism  in  the  last  North  A 
Review — I  have  not  been  able  to  get  the 
Number. — ^The  work  is  in  future  to  be  con- 
ducted by  M-  Everett. — I  will  write  to  you 
again  before  I  go  to  Charleston. 
I  am  My  d'  I, 

Affects  Y? 
H.  Brevoort  J' 

I  wish  you  would  permit  Murray  to  pub- 
lish your  work. — He  might  publish  a  voliune 
comprising  5  numbers. 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

New  York,  April  —  1820. 


It  is  a  long  while  since  I  have  written  to 
you,  but  still  longer  since  I  have  received  any 
of  your  Letters.  As  this  interruption  of  our 
correspondence  has  been  entirely  casual,  I  am 
determined  to  break  silence  first  and  set  you  a 
good  example.  I  always  begin  with  my  private 
affairs,  and  I  expect  you  to  do  the  same.  I 
am  entitled  to  this  mark  of  your  confidence, 
especially  as  no  one  of  your  friends  partici- 
pates with  more  sincerity ,  every  thing  that 
concerns  you  either  of  good  or  evil. 

I  returned  from  Charleston  two  months 
ago,  chiefly  to  prepare  for  building  a  House. 
Previous  to  my  departure  I  was  enriched  by 
the  birth  of  second  Son — My  wife  has  entirely 
recovered  her  health,  and  will  join  me  early 
in  May.  I  have  taken  a  House  in  Hudson 
Square  (J  Murray's)  for  the  next  year,  after- 
wards I  hope  we  may  enjoy  a  Home  of  our 

own.    The  vagrant  sort  of  life  that  I  have  led 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

some  time  past,  makes  me  doubly  impatient 
for  the  return  of  my  family  and  a  renewal  of 
domestic  comforts. — 

M"'-'  Renwick  has  given  up  her  place  at 
Bloomingdale  &  taken  a  House  in  White 
Street — She  has  sustained  many  losses,  but 
retains  an  income  quite  adequate  to  a  com- 
fortable establishment.  James  &  Margaret 
are  to  reside  at  my  father's  and  with  us,  until 
he  can  find  employment  which  at  this  moment 
is  nearly  hopeless.  The  Ins:  Company  has 
lately  abolished  the  life  department,  and 
thereby  deprived  James  of  his  last  source  of 
income. — These  cruel  reverses  of  fortune  are 
endured  by  them  patiently,  but  a  long  time 
must  elapse  before  hope  can  be  renewed,  and 
old  times  forgotten. — In  this  City  fortune  is 
resolved  to  let  no  one  escape  her  caprices:  the 
whole  aspect  of  domestic  life  has  changed 
since  you  left  us. — ^AU  the  ordinary  sources 
of  industry   seem  to  have   closed — a  great 

portion  of  the  Houses  in  the  City  are  to  let,  & 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

their  inhabitants  obliged  to  seek  a  livelihood 
elsewhere. — ^Amidst  the  general  pressure  of 
the  times  your  work  augments  in  popularity. — 
The  last  number  is  highly  relished,  particularly 
the  Legend,  which  in  my  opinion  is  one  of 
the  best  articles  you  have  written — It  unites 
all  the  excellencies  of  your  old  &  new  manner  of 
writing.  The  old  people  are  surprised  at  your 
accurate  recollections  of  the  localities  of  the 
place  &  its  inhabitants. — My  old  uncle  Ab"  a 
mighty  warrior  of  the  olden  time,  entertained 
me  with  a  commentary  on  every  name  that 
you  have  mentioned,  even  to  Brom  Bones 
whom  he  recognizes  for  his  first  friend  Brom 
Byce. — ^He  says  Dolter  Martling  had  a  share  in 
the  exploit  you  have  recorded,  but  that  some- 
body Nestle  was  the  real  hero,  inasmuch  as  he 
never  was  able  to  walk  afterwards,  by  reason 
of  the  wind  of  a  Cannon  Ball  which  wounded 
him  in  the  small  of  the  back! — ^Judge  Benson 
has  even  promised  to  read  it,  but  he  stoutly 

maintains  that  you  are  not  a  true  dutchman, 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

as  your  name  testifieth. — I  hinted  to  him 

that  I  should  not  be  greatly  surprised  if  an 

answer  were  written  to  his  toyings  with  your 

Wife,  but  he  insists  that  neither  that,  nor  any 

other  production  of  his  pen,  can  be  answered 

by  mortal  man.    "No  Sir  I  never  write  things 

that  can  be  answered  Sir. "  Verily  the  old  Gent : 

speaketh  truly — ^He  has  since  left  word,  that 

he  wishes  me  to  call  on  him  for  a  corrected 

copy  of  his  remarks,  to  be  forwarded  to  you. 

I  am  anxious  to  learn  how  your  Vol :  is  rec"?  in 

England. — In  the  Feb :  Nimiber  of  Blackwood, 

which  I  have  this  moment  seen,  you  are  very 

highly  complimented.    I  think  you  will  become 

a  great  favourite  in  England — ^nor  should  I  be 

surprised  that  they  lay  claims  to  you ;  proving 

their  rights  by  your  name  &  the  purity  of  your 

style. — Paulding's  Salmagundi  died  the  death 

at   the  10*''  Ntunber. — John   Bull   seems  to 

have  taken  the  Backwoodsman  into  especial 

favor ;  this  may  induce  the  author  to  relent  in 

his  wordy  warfare  with  that  personage. — 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

I  send  you  a  copy  of  The  Bucktail  Bards 
at  the  request  of  G  C  VerPlanck,  who  is  the 
author  of  all  that  stands  in  the  name  of  Pindar 
Puff  as  well  as  the  Notes. — Dirk  Shift  is 
by  John  Duer. — ^Ver  P  should  pause  before 
he  enlists  in  the  unprofitable  contest  between 
Clinton  &  Tompkins. — It  reminds  one  of 
Goldsmith's  Dust  &  Dung. — I  suspect  that 
Ver  P  is  somewhat  influenced  by  personal 
resentment  against  the  Magnus — 

I  have  also  inclosed  a  pamphlet  with  the 
correspondence  between  Decatur  &  Barron. — 

I  regret  that  I  cannot  give  any  particulars 
of  the  last  moments  of  our  gallant  friend;  he 
is  said  to  have  expressed  regrets  at  having 
given  Barron  the  meeting. — ^He  certainly 
might  have  avoided  it,  as  you  wUl  perceive 
by  the  correspondence. 

It  is  one  of  those  dreadful  events  which  will 

not  bear  reflection. — Poor  M"  D,  I  understand 

[is]  in  a  sort  of  stupor — ^her  heart  seems  parched 

with  misery,  which  denies  her  even  the  con- 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

solation  of  a  tear.  He  had  taken  the  pre- 
caution to  assemble  her  friends  around  her 
previous  to  the  fatal  rencontre. — 

Kemble  is  in  Town.  The  Foundery  con- 
cern promises  better  than  ever — by  the 
Autumn  we  expect  it  will  realize  its  promises, 
which  have  been  rather  long  winded. — Gouv: 
has  done  all  that  man  can  do  for  the  interests 
of  the  concern. — 

Your  Brother  W"  appears  to  be  apprehen- 
sive that  neither  you  nor  the  Doctor  are 
sufficiently  aware  of  the  zeal  which  he  has 
shewn  in  the  promotion  of  your  interests. — 
I  can  only  say  that  to  my  knowledge  he  has 
never  been  backward  in  doing  all  that  was  in 
his  power  to  do. — 

The  circle  of  his  existence  is  apparently 
narrower  than  ever;  and  the  peculiarities  of 
his  character  have  rather  grown  upon  him 
than  otherwise. — I  think  some  acknowledg- 
ment of  your  sense  of  his  goodwill  &  kind 

disposition  would  give  hun  great  satisfaction, 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  —  1820 

Ebenezer  tells  me  that  you  &  the  D'  were 
on  the  eve  of  a  trip  to  the  Continent — but  I 
presume  this  letter  will  find  you  returned. — 
Pray  write  to  me,  and  do  not  put  me  off  with 
half  a  dozen  lines,  but  indulge  in  a  long  letter. — 

My  d^  I 

ever  affec'^  Y^ 

H.  B.,  J^ 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  —  1820 
New  York,  November  — 1820. 


This  is  the  first  conveyance  that  has  ofifered 
for  Havre  since  I  received  your  letter  dated 
the  22'^  at  Paris. — 

I  have  held  frequent  conversations  with 
your  brothers  on  the  subject  of  your  letter, 
and  have  said  all  that  I  could  possibly  say  in  a 
case  of  so  much  delicacy. — Prom  the  beginning 
they  have  expressed  themselves  averse  to  the 
prudence  of  your  enterprize,  and  on  that 
ground  solely,  they  have  decided  not  to  give 
it  their  support — ^The  nature  of  their  objec- 
tions will  be  communicated  by  themselves. — 
I  offered  to  come  under  advances  on  your  part 
for  ^5000,  to  be  refunded  by  the  future  avails 
of  your  literary  property,  which  no  doubt 
will  eventually  produce  that  amount.  But 
Ebenezer  is  of  opinion,  that  it  would  not  be 
worth  your  attention  to  engage  in  the  project 
unless  with  the  full  amount  of  capital  proposed. 

■ — I  am  really  at  a  loss  to  express  myself  on  the 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  —  1820 

result  of  this  business — I  fear  you  will  be 
bitterly  disappointed — How  far  success  might 
have  attended  your  project  I  am  incompetent 
to  judge;  I  have  not  seen  your  Letters  to  your 
brothers,  but  I  take  it  for  granted  that  you 
viewed  the  subject  on  all  sides — I  can  only 
venture  to  hope  that  your  calculations  of 
advantage  may  turn  out  [not]  to  have  been 
too  sanguine. 

Before  I  quit  the  subject  I  must  remark 
confidentially,  that  I  have  reason  to  believe, 
that  the  motives  of  my  zeal  in  your  con- 
cerns have  been  misunderstood  by  your 
brothers  W"  &  Ebenezer.  Whether  they 
think  my  participations  intrusive,  or  that 
the  affairs  you  have  hitherto  entrusted  with 
me,  have  been  withheld  from  them,  I  know 
not,  but  it  is  certain  that  I  have  felt  some 
rude  intimations  on  this  subject  which  I 
would  rather  dispense  with  in  the  future. 
— I  do  not  think  it  worth  while  to  be  of- 
fended with   them   on   this   matter,    but    I 

VOL.  II. 9.  129 

NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  —  1820 

thought  it  a  duty  to  discharge  my  conscience 
by  telling  you. — 

My  wife  begs  you  will  do  her  the  favor  to 
purchase  a  dozen  popular  airs,  waltzes  & 
dances,  simple  or  with  variations,  for  the  Harp. 
The  music  of  Bochsa  is  always  good,  but  not 
so  well  adapted  for  society  as  the  compositions 
of  less  scientific  or  polished  composers.  She 
would  prefer  you  should  select  any  agreeable 
lively  music  of  the  above  named  description 
by  fashionable  composers — M^  Beasely  will 
find  a  conveyance  for  them  to  N  York, — 

I  wish  you  would  call  on  my  old  f? 
Lherbette;  he  is  well  settled  in  Paris  and  can- 
not fail  to  prove  an  agreeable  and  valuable 
acquaintance — Should  you  see  him  pray  give 
my  kindest  regards. — Have  you  met  M"  & 
Miss  Cruger — they  were  our  neighbors  at 
Bloomingdale. — 

James  Renwick  is  to  be  appointed  Prof:  of 

Nat:  Phil:  in  Col:  College— this  is  the  first 

ray  of  sunshine  he  has  felt  for  a  long  while. 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  —  1820 

The  salary  will  be  1500  $  to  be  augmented  to 
^2500  so  soon  as  the  funds  of  the  Col:  will 
permit — My  kindest  regard  to  your  brother. 
My  Wife  begs  to  be  rememb*^. — I  am  My  d'  I, 
Aif  ec':  Y^ 

H.  Brevoort,  J^ 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  8!^  1821 

New  York,  January  8-,  1821. 


I  hope  you  rec^  my  last  letter  dated  in 
November,  especially  as  I  learn  since,  that 
your  brother  did  not  write  by  the  same  con- 
veyance.— To  the  subject  of  that  Letter,  I 
have  no  wish  to  recur,  but  I  am  very  anxious 
to  hear  what  variations  it  has  produced  in 
your  views. — 

As  usual,  I  have  little  to  say  except  the 
local  occurrences  of  the  day. — Renwick  has 
been  appointed  to  the  professorship  of  Exp: 
Phil:  &  Chemistry  in  Col:  College— On 
Tuesday  he  delivered  an  inaugural  lecture 
which  gave  universal  satisfaction. 

The  Trustees  seemed  resolved  to  raise  the 

reputation  of  the  College  to  the  first  rank. 

When  the  funds  are  adequate,  VerPlanck  is  to 

be  appointed  Prof:  of  Rhetoric.    At  present 

there  are  five  professors  viz,  Adraine — Nat: 

Moore — ^Anthon — M'rVickar  &  Renwick. — Dr. 

JHarris  is  the  President. — 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  8«1  1821 

Our  greatest  novelty  of  late  is  M'  Kean. 
He  played  sixteen  nights  in  the  Anthony  S* 
Theatre  to  crowded  audiences  &  with  enthusi- 
astic applause.  A  small  party  of  dissentients, 
composed  of  M'  Cooper' s  patriotic  admirers, 
protested  against  Kean's  merits.  Induced 
by  their  zeal  &  by  his  own  confidence  Cooper 
immediately  succeeded  Kean  in  several  char- 
acters but  drew  very  thin  audiences.  He  saw 
Kean  in  Sir  Giles  &  Lear,  and  pronounced  his 
acting  to  be  mere  trick.  Kean  mortified  him 
by  keeping  from  the  Theatre,  throughout  his 
engagement. — The  consequence  is  that  their 
admirers  have  declared  open  war — In  point 
of  genius  &  skill  in  acting  Kean  is  greatly 
above  him — ^but  Cooper's  person  &  voice  give 
him  an  advantage  in  playing  two  or  three 
characters.  He  has  gone  to  New  Orleans  & 
Kean  to  Philadelphia,  accompanied  by  Price 
&  Jack  Nicolson — The  worthy  Capt  is  quite 
enamoured  with  his  new  acquaintance — Price 

gave  him  50  £  Stg.  for  each  performance, 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  8th  1821 

(exclusive  of  benefits)  in  N  York.  The 
Houses  averaged  ^900.  It  is  said  he  has 
agreed  to  pay  him  the  same  sum  in  lieu  of 
half  the  proceeds  of  Kean's  engagement  in 

Price  who  is  overloaded  with  debt,  swaggers 
in  his  usual  way,  by  his  great  success — ^He 
threatens  Beekman  &  Astor,  with  building  a 
new  Theatre,  unless  they  comply  with  his 
proposals  for  the  one  now  rebuilding. — He  has 
engaged  Philips  the  Singer  for  the  next  season 
and  is  resolved  to  take  the  field  against  Astor 
&  B,  at  all  events,  in  the  Bam  in  Anthony 
Street. — 

M^  Kean  brought  me  a  letter  of  introduc- 
tion from  a  Lady  in  Edinbtirgh.  His  manners 
are  very  gentlemanlike — He  sings  with  ex- 
quisite taste  &  his  various  imitations  are  very 
clever. — 

His  conduct  in  New  York  has  been  very 

guarded,  and  all  who  have  become  acquainted 

with  him  concur   in   extolling   him — Never- 


NEW  YORK  JANUARY  8*^  1821 

theless,  I  am  inclined  to  believe  that  his 
former  habits  have  been  somewhat  at  variance 
with  his  present  ones.  He  returns  in  June 
by  the  way  of  Italy,  where  his  family  are  to 
join  him. — On  New  Year's  day,  he  dined  at 
Jn°  R.  Livingstons  with  a  party  of  forty 
persons,  among'which  were  Cooper  the  Bishop 
&  Phil:  Brasher!  —  Everything  went  left 
handed  &  a  score  of  absurdities  were  com- 

A  public  dinner  was  given  him  by  about 
thirty  persons  at  the  City  Hotel,  which  went 
off  very  well.  Upon  the  whole  I  think  Kean's 
success  has  been  as  great  or  very  nearly  so,  as 
Cooke's  although  his  merits  are  certainly  not 
in  the  same  rank. — 

What  do  you  intend  to  do  with  the 
Sketch  Book?  Are  we  to  have  no  more 
numbers  P^Paulding  has  lately  published  a 
whole  Vol  of  Salmagundi — ^it  is  the  last. 
What  new  project  he  has  on  hand  I  know  not. 

— If  you  meet  with  anything  new  in  Paris, 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  8^  1821 

that  you  think  well  written   pray   send   it 
to  me. — 

My  wife  &  boys  are  very  well — she  begs  me 
to  present  her  kindest  regards  to  you. — ^We 
shall  remove  by  the  i  May  to  the  new  House 
N°  15  Broad  Way. — I  have  fitted  up  a  very 
snug  room  for  a  Library,  which  I  hope  you  will 
enjoy. — My  good  old  parents  are  as  well  as 
usual. — Kemble  is  now  on  a  visit  to  us — ^W" 
Kemble's  wife  has  a  daughter. — I  called  on 
New  Year's  day  on  M"  Hofifinan  whom  I 
had  not  seen  for  a  long  while. — Hoffman  has 
joined  the  party  ascendant,  but  I  fear  no 
office  will  be  given  to  him. — ^AU  the  present 
incumbents  of  offices  are  to  be  renamed  at 
the  meeting  of  the  New  Council  on  the  15 
Feb^  his  Worship  the  Mayor  among  the  rest. 
— My  warmest  regards  to  yoiu:  brother- — and 
believe  me  most  affect  Y! 



NEW  YORK,  MAY  7^^  1821 

New  York,  May  f-  1821. 


After  a  long  interval  of  time  I  received  your 
Letter  of  March  loth. — The  explanation  of 
your  motives  for  remaining  abroad  (I  am 
sorry  to  say)  are  quite  satisfactory.  I  did  not 
intend  to  give  you  pain  by  interrogating  you 
on  the  subject,  and  so,  for  the  future  let  it  rest. 

I  am  glad  to  learn  that  you  are  earnestly 
engaged  with  your  pen.  Success  must  have 
given  you  confidence  &  as  to  the  resources  of 
your  mind,  in  my  opinion  they  are  more 
abundant  than  you  are  yet  aware  of. — 

Do  you  intend  to  continue  your  sketches 
in  different  parts  of  the  continent?  The 
design  would  be  admirable  were  it  possible 
for  you  to  become  sufficiently  at  home  in 
France  Switzerland  &  Italy. — But  perhaps 
you  have  hit  upon  other  subjects. — 

It  is  true  that   I   have  withdrawn  from 

mercantile   affairs — ^whether    I    am   justified 

in    so    doing    must    depend    upon    prudent 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  y±  1821 

management. — Certainly  I  do  not  mean  to 

remain   an   idle   spectator   in   society — that 

would  be  both  irrational  as  well  as  selfish. 

Still  I  feel  the  justice  of  your  reproaches  & 

confess  myself  too  indifferent  of  public  favor 

&  too  diffident  of  my  ability  to  merit  it,  were 

I  so  disposed.     But  I  persuade  myself  that 

hitherto  my  concerns  have  been  too  precarious 

and  unsettled  to  admit  of  higher  pursuits. — 

I  do  not  believe  myself  capable  of  doing  great 

things,  yet  I  ought  not  to  be  ashamed  of 

lesser  ones — and  to  leave  this  would  be  a  mere 

hie  jacet  is  too  mortifying  to  be  endured. — I 

wish  you  had  executed  your  design.    To  your 

counsels   I   should   listen  with   respect   and 

attention,  and  if  any  motive  could  stimulate 

me  to  exertion,  it  would  be  at  your  suggestion 

and  with  your  encouragement. — But  I  fear 

I  will  tire  you  by  this  talk  about  nothing, 

although  you  are  the  only  person  on  whom  I 

would  care  to  bestow  my  egotism. — 

You  keep   excellent   company  in   Paris — 

NEW  YORK,  MAY  7*^  1821 

Anacreon  Moore  &  M^  Canning;  these  are 
names  that  set  ones  blood  in  motion,  and  to 
associate  with  them  on  terms  of  literary 
equality  is  indeed  a  distinction  of  the  highest 
value,  and  to  which  you  are  fully  entitled. — 

I  hardly  know  what  to  say  to  you  of  the 
affairs  &  persons  of  those  that  surround  me. — 
Paulding  &  his  family  have  just  arrived — I  am 
not  yet  acquainted  with  his  designs,  or 
whether  he  has  any  in  hand. — He  has  been 
roughly  &  ungratefully  requited  by  the  public 
— I  hope  he  will  not  again  venture  anything 
without  the  utmost  circtmispection. 

There  is  a  person  (not  of  this  City)  who  is 

about  to  publish  a  work  somewhat  in  the 

manner  of  your  S  Book. — He  is  very  highly 

spoken  of  by  good  judges. — Should  his  work 

be  worthy  of  attention  I  will  send  it  to  you. — 

Verplanck  is  full  of  politics  (&  politics  never 

ran  lower  among  us,  than  they  do  now) — He 

was  a  useful  member  of  Assembly  &  made 

several  reports — He  spoke  seldom  &  not  with 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  yM?  1821 

any  marked  success. — Cambreling  is  elected 

our    present    member    of    Congress — He    is 

intolerably  vain  of  his  honors,  and  had  he 

lost  them  I  verily  believe  he  would  have  died 

of  vexation.    Walter  Patterson  is  also  elected 

a  member.     M"  Cooper  told  me  that  she  had 

written  you  a  long   Letter  introducing  a  M' 

Somebody. — Cooper    is     at     New    Orleans. 

Kean,   after  being  very  unjustly  and  cruelly 

treated  at    Philad^  has  gone  to    Baltimore, 

where  he  is  playing  with  his  usual  success. 

— He  is  to  remain  here  another  season  &  will 

probably  play  at  the  opening  of  our  New 

Theatre  in  Sept  or  Oct:  next. — Price  after  a 

world  of  negociation  with  Beekman  &  Astor 

through  the  medium  of  our  favourite  Jack 

Nicolson,  has  taken  a  lease  of  it,  at  a  net  of 

13000^   per   annimi. — The   Theatre   will   be 

beautiful,  but  I  fear  it  will  never  support  such 

an  enormous  rent  charge. — Price  intends  to 

go  to  England  in  the  next  Liverpool  packet  to 

beat  up  recruits. — I  saw  M"?  Hoffman  at  a 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  7«?  1821 

Ball  a  few  evenings  since  at  Tom:  Morns'. 
She  made  many  kind  inquiries  after  you.  Her 
health  is  no  better  than  usual.  Hoffman  is  as 
greatly  [engaged(?)]*  in  politics  as  ever. — The 
old  Lady  is  very  infirm  and  will  not  probably 
live  out  the  summer. — M"  Nicholas  still  con- 
tinues to  reside  at  Phil:  Rhinelanders,  in 
defiance  to  much  illnatured  scandal. — She  is 
actuated  by  no  worse  motive  than  caprice, 
I  confidently  beheve. — M-  Lyman,  the  author 
of  the  most  unlucky  tome  on  Italy,  is  to  be 
married  tomorrow  to  Miss  Henderson  a  Lady 
of  high  pretensions  and  fvill  of  most  blest 
condition. — 

M'.'  Bradish  has  taken  M^  Le  Roy's  large 
House  in  Broad  Way — Nicolson  holds  out  in 
the  Colony  about  10  doors  below.  He  means 
to  write  you  a  long  Letter  forthwith — Major 
Lee  (by  authentic  reports)  has  squandered  his 
wife's  fortune,  seduced  her  sister,  &  abscon- 
ded!— ^William    Gracie    will    probably    have 

*  The  Manuscript  is  torn  here. 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  7*1}  1821 

reached  you  before  this — To  him  I  refer  you 
for  every  sort  of  information.  My  Wife 
desires  me  to  present  her  kindest  regards. 
My  sons  are  two  brave  fellows. — We  intend  to 
remove  to  N?  15  Broad  Way  in  a  week. — 
Believe  me  my  d-  I 

Most  affect  y? 

H.  B.  y. 

Your  picture  by  Newton  will  be  exhibited 
next  week  in  the  annual  exhibition  of  the 
Academy  of  fine  Arts, — 

The  Delafields  are  very  well — He  has  had 
the  misfortune  to  lose  his  youngest  child 
lately. — 


NEW  YORK,  JUNE  i5«?  1821 

New  York,  June  15-  182 1. 


I  have  rec^  your  Letters  dated  the  5,  14  & 
21  April.  The  two  dfts  for  ?iooo  each,  have 
been  accepted;  and  should  your  brother  E  be 
unable  to  make  up  the  remittance  of  ^1000 
to  Mr  Beasley,  I  have  promised  to  assist 
him  with  the  residue,  but  it  is  probable  he 
will  not  stand  in  need  of  help. — I  am  happy 
to  understand  that  by  this  arrangement 
your  mind  will  be  disengaged  from  pecu- 
niary matters  and  exclusively  devoted  to 
literature. — 

The  explanation  you  have  given  of  your 
future  ability  to  discharge  these  advances,  is 
perfectly  satisfactory;  I  can,  without  incon- 
venience, wait  until  your  means  will  enable 
you  to  do  so  at  your  leisiu-e.  Meanwhile,  it 
affords  me  real  pleasure  to  be  of  use  to  you, 
and  I  beg  you  will  not  burthen  your  mind 
with  any  weight  of  obligation. 

I    presume    from    what    formerly    passed 

NEW  YORK,  JUNE  I5*JJ  1821 

between  us  in  regard  to  the  Steam  B  enter- 
prize  that  J  T*  will  comply  with  your  brother's 
wishes.  The  statement  you  have  sent  of  the 
prospect  of  success,  exhibit[s]  the  project 
in  a  favourable  point  of  view,  &  I  sincerely 
hope  it  may  not  be  marred  by  further  doubts 
and  delays. 

We  are  now  near  neighbors  of  your  brother 
William.  His  health  throughout  the  winter 
has  been  infirm,  and  his  spirits  sadly  depressed 
&  broken.  He  is  now  greatly  relieved  and 
seems  inclined  to  resume  cheerful  habits. 
Ebenezer  is  a  real  philosopher;  with  ten  times 
the  motive  for  despondence,  he  never  suffers 
his  mind  &  spirits  to  waste  in  hopeless  repin- 
ings.  J  T  keeps  his  course  straight  onward. 
No  man  in  the  community  enjoys,  &  indeed 
no  man  merits  a  larger  share  of  public  & 
private  confidence. — :His  income  must  now 
be  large,  but  the  practice  of  the  law  seems  to 
have  increased  his  distrust  of  prosperity. — 

*  Judge  John  Treat  Irving,  Washington's  brother. 

NEW  YORK,  JUNE  15th  1821 

George  Enninger  has  not  yet  arrived  —  I 
shall  be  glad  to  see  him — ^he  is  a  young  man  of 
the  kindest  temper  &  disposition. — 

Kean  has  left  us  in  a  huff.  His  repentance 
seemed  to  augment  at  every  step  of  his  de- 
parture. At  Sandy  Hook  he  even  promised 
to  return. — His  preposterous  vanity  led  him 
into  an  error  that  has  been  punished  by  our 
editors  as  a  crime.  I  am  really  sorry  for 
Kean — In  my  intercourse  with  him,  he  always 
conducted  himself  in  the  most  gentlemanlike 
&  engaging  manner — Had  he  remained  here 
another  season,  he  might  have  added  300o£ 
to  the  4000  £  stg.  that  he  carried  with  him. 

Jack  Nicolson  is  greatly  distressed — ^he 
stuck  to  Kean  to  the  last  like  a  man. — 

The  New  Sketch  Book  N?  i  has  appeared 
with  the  title  of  "The  Idle  Man."  It  is 
printed  very  elegantly  &  has  some  merit, 
but  not  enough  to  encourage  the  author's 

Your  old  acquaintance  Hetty  Gracie  is  to 

VOL.  II. — 10.  X4S 

NEW  YORK,  JUNE  15^  1821 

sail  for  Liverpool  to-day.     She  is  accompanied 
by  her  husband  M^  Beach  Laurence. — 

I  look  with  anxiety  for  your  new  work. — In 
the  mean  while  no  hint  of  it  shall  be  given  out. 
— I  must  postpone  until  another  opportunity 
many  small  matters  that  I  have  to  communi- 
cate— as  the  Ship  by  which  this  goes  is  on 
the  point  of  departure. 

My  Wife  &  children  are  very  well — 

ever  affect^  Y? 
H.  Brevoort,  y. 


NEW  YORK.  OCTOBER  9*  1821 

New  York,  October  ^  1821. 


It  is  a  long  while  since  I  have  rec"?  a  Letter 
from  you — ^the  15  May  was  the  last. — Mr. 
Ehninger*  has  given  me  a  good  many  particu- 
lars of  your  domestic  history — ^but  he  seems  to 
know  little  of  the  inner  man.  He  is  a  kind 
hearted  soul,  with  a  head  full  of  crudities, 
which  travel  has  not  much  corrected. 

I  lately  spent  a  few  days  at  Ancram  with 
Walter  Patterson-^his  brother  W?  was  with 
us,  and  gratified  me  with  much  intelligence  of 
your  brother  Peter,  as  well  as  yourself.  What 
a  pragmatical  old  Monsieur  he  has  become ! — 

By  the  last  accounts  from  M"  V  Wart, 
you  were  in  London  previous  to  the  Corona- 
tion, which  I  hope  you  witnessed  as  well  as 
our  illustrious  countryman  Ezra  Weeks,  Esq- 
His  adventures  in  high  life  are  the  amusement 
of  Gotham. 

I  am  anxious  to  learn  whether  you  are  in 

*  Elsewhere  spelled  Enninger — 

NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  9!^  1821 

the. hands  of  Murray.  Ehninger  thinks  you 
have  written  something  about  the  Trouba- 
dours— ^further  he  knoweth  not.  They  would 
furnish  rich  materials  for  ,  a  Chivalric 
Romance,  but  I  would  rather  you  had  under- 
taken a  work  of  fiction  with  American  mate- 
rials, drawn  from  any  period  of  our  national 
existence. — ^^I  am  satisfied  that  you  are  able 
to  write  such  a  work,  difficult  as  it  may  first 
appear  to  you. 

By  the  by,  you  ought  ■  to  send  Ebenezer 
another  number  of  the  S  Book  to  complete 
the  work — ^that  it  may  be  bound  in  two 
volumes. — 

I  understand  Knickerbocker  either  has,  or 
is  to  appear  with  illustrations.  If  you  coiild 
obtain  the  plates  for  a  new  edition  here,  it 
would  be  worth  your  attention. — 

Your  Brothers  have  no  doubt  informed  you 

of  the  hopeless  state  of  W'l'  Irving's  health. 

I  wish  it  was  in  my  power  to  encourage  you 

with  hopes  of  his  amendment. — 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  9*!?  1821 

Your  f?  Miss  Ann  Delafield  (she  that  you 
knew  in  London)  was  thrown  from  a  wagon  a 
few  days  since,  and  survived  only  eight  hours. 
One  of  the  younger  brothers  was  driving  her 
to  M-  Prince's  cottage  at  Hellgate  (which 
John  Delafield  had  taken  as  a  summer  resi- 
dence) The  horse  took  fright  in  the  lane 
leading  to  the  cottage,  ran  off,  and  threw  her 
with  violence  against  a  stone  which  fractured 
her  head. — 

One  of  her  younger  sisters  lies  in  the  last 
stage  of  consumption  &  her  father  has  for  a 
long  while  been  tottering  on  the  brink  of  the 
grave. — Poor  D  has  been  oppressed  by  afflic- 
tion ever  since  his  arrival. — 

In  the  absence  of  Ebenezer  I  purchased 
with  funds  furnished  by  him,  Le  Roy  Bayard 
&  C^  Bill  in  Paris  for  $1000  and  remitted  it 
some  time  ago  to  M^  Beasley. — Paulding  & 
his  Wife  have  just  returned  from  the  High- 
lands,  having  passed   the   summer  with   G 

Kemble — Ann  Nicholas  returned  about  two 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  9«?  1821 

months  since  from  a  residence  of  two  years  at 
the  house  of  Phil:  Rhinelander — Charles  is 
well  estabHshed  at  Richmond,  as  Cashier  of 
the  U  S  Branch  Bank — ^he  has  written  for  Ann 
who  seems  in  no  haste  to  join  him. — Renwick 
Sc  his  wife  are  to  take  immediate  possession 
of  a  suite  of  apartments  in  the  College.  He 
gets  on  bravely  as  a  professor. — 

We  are  to  take  our  departure  for  Charleston 
(for  the  last  time,  positively)  on  the  21'*  ins* 
in  the  Steam  Ship.  I  believe  I  shall  return  to 
N  Y  in  the  course  of  the  winter. — My  Wife 
&  sons  will  remain  with  M"  Carson  until 
May. — 

Mr.  Jn°    Bristed  goes  in  this  Packet   for 

England.     He  finds  it  impossible  to  bear  the 

matrimonial  yoke  any  longer  with  that  Lamb 

of  Bellzebub,  my  well  beloved  Couzen  the 

late  M"  Bentzon. — He  is  literally  wasted  to 

the  bone  by  the  severity  of  her  discipline. 

Their  fracas  have  furnished  the  Town  with 

scandal  these  six  months.    She  is  certainly  a 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  9*!?  1821 

maniac. — Nicolson  begs  you  to  answer  his 
Letter.  He  has  just  recovered  from  a  des- 
perate love  affair,  being  the  twentieth  or 
thereabouts. — My  Wife — &  my  children — ^my 
Father  &  Mother  are  all  well  &  happy. — 
ever  affectionately  Yr^ 



NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  iL*  1827 
New  York,  January  i- 1827. 


The  paragraph  in  your  letter  to  Ebenezer 

relating  to  me,  has  given  me  more  pain  than 

I  am  willing  to  express;  not,  as  you  will 

presently  perceive,  that  I  am  in  the  least 

degree  amenable  to  your  reproaches,  or  have 

ever  given  you  cause  to  utter  them  in  terms  so 

harsh,  and  I  must  say,  unfriendly.    How  it  has 

happened,  that  you  have  received  none  of  my 

letters,  I  am  unable  tO'  explain.     The  last 

letter  that  I  rec^  of  yours,  was  dated   the 

29    May  1825,   introducing    to  me   Mr.  S* 

Aubyn   &   M'   Hallam.      I   had   previously 

written  to  you  several  times,  but  at  present 

I  am  unable  to  specify  dates.     My  last  letter 

was  dated  the  14  Nov:  1825 — directed  to  the 

care  of  Wells  &  C°,  Paris. — It  was  a  letter  of 

two  sheets,  written  with  that  perfect  openess 

of  heart  &  kindness  of  feeling,  which  never 

for  a  moment  has  ceased  to  characterize  my 

sentiments  towards  you. — BeHeving  that  it 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  il*  1827 

must  have  reached  you,  I  was  puzzled  to 
account  for  your  silence,  and  have  again  & 
again  asked  your  brother  whether  in  your 
letters  to  him,  you  had  not  alluded  to  it  and 
to  myself. — I  was  however  willing  to  impute 
the  delay  to  your  wanderings,  and  to  the 
exclusive  nature  of  your  Kterary  pursuits — 
never  did  I  permit  any  tmkind  construction  of 
your  seeming  neglect  to  cross  my  mind.  Nor 
was  it  possible  that  any  neglect  of  the  kind 
could  weaken  the  deep  foundation  of  my 
attachment  to  you — an  attachment  which  as 
I  hope  for  mercy,  I  have  never  felt  towards 
any  other  man. — ^Judge  then  how  sensibly  I 
was  hurt  by  your  choosing  to  put  the  existence 
&  the  continuance  of  my  friendship  to  a  final 
issue. — ^Whoever  it  was  that  informed  you, 
that  my  mind  was  absorbed  &  debased  by 
money-making  pursuits,  was  guilty  of  utter- 
ing a  base  falsehood.  The  repetition  of  so 
gross  an  aspersion,  although  disbelieved  by 
vou,  appears  irreconcilable  to  my  conception 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  iL*  1827 

of  the  disinterested  fdship  that  has  invariably- 
existed  between  us;  and  I  am  persuaded  that 
it  must  have  slipt  from  your  pen  in  a  moment 
of  irritation. — I  certainly  do  not  hold  myself 
answerable  to  the  misjudgments  of  those  who 
are  merely  spectators  of  my  motives  &  my 
actions,  and  the  very  retired  manner  in  which 
I  pass  my  life  sets  me  aloof  (thank  God)  from 
the  impertinence  of  a  closer  observation  of 
them. — Money  getting,  which  may  be  called 
the  besetting  sin  of  this  community  has  never 
absorbed  my  attention;  but  in  avoiding  the 
infection  I  have  sometimes  thought  myself 
an  unwise  exception,  judging  from  the  keen 
excitement  which  its  pursuit  seems  to  impart 
to  its  votaries. — 

Indeed,  excepting  the  settlement  of  old 
transactions  &  the  affairs  of  others,  I  have  had 
scarcely  any  thing  to  do  with  traffic  for  some 
years. — But  the  infamous  manner  in  which  so 
many  of  our  monied  institutions  have  been 

plundered  within  the  last  twelvemonth,  has 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  il*  1827 

made  me  feel  much  less  secure  of  independence 
than  I  could  have  wished — and  the  efforts  that 
I  have  been  obliged  to  make  to  escape  with 
the  least  possible  loss,  have  furnished  my  mind 
with  an  abundance  of  disgusting  toil  &  dis- 

Those  dull  details  of  myself  are  drawn  from 
you  by  your  own  severity;  yet  I  trust  I  have 
said  nothing  more  than  was  strictly  necessary 
to  my  own  defence ;  but  if  I  have  said  aught  to 
offend  your  feelings,  I  hope  you  will  overlook 
it  &  remember  that  this  is  the  only  instance 
of  discord  that  has  ever  arisen  between  us. — 
Let  us  then  my  dear  Irving  begin  the  new 
year  by  a  renewal  of  kind  and  affectionate 
recollections  &  by  frank  and  frequent  inter- 
change of  our  sentiments. — 

I  have  been  living  for  the  last  two  months 

with  my  Sister  at  the  CoUege  &  shall  probably 

continue   with    her   until    the    Spring. — My 

Wife  with  the  three  youngest  children  (girls) 

is  gone  to  Charleston  to  pass  the  winter  with 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  i!*  1827 

her  mother  to  whom  she  had  made  a  promise 
which  could  not  be  got  rid  of.  The  two  boys 
are  at  a  french  boarding  school — (Mess" 
Peugnet). — The  disagreeable  occupation  to 
which  I  have  alluded  above,  has  compelled 
me  to  remain  in  New  York  &  to  make  so  great 
a  sacrafice  of  my  domestic  enjoyments. — ■ 
Your  brother  has  always  communicated  to 
me  your  various  movements  &  occupations  & 
I  am  glad  to  learn  from  him  that  you  are 
heartily  engaged  in  writing  the  life  of  Colum- 
bus— ^it  is  a  subject  of  great  dignity  as  well  as 
interest — an  American  one,  too,  and  in  every 
point  of  view  befitting  the  imployment  of  your 
mind. — M^  Gait,  who  passed  some  time  in 
New  York  lately,  requested  me  to  say  to  you 
that  he  possesses  the  only  original  portrait 
of  Columbus  known  to  be  in  existence — and 
that  if  you  chose  to  have  it  ingraved  for  your 
work,  he  had  given  instructions  to  his  wife 
in  London  to  place  it  at  your  disposal  by 

means  of  Murray  or  in  any  other  way  that 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  iL^  1827 

you  might  see  fit. — Renwick  &  his  family 
are  very  happily  situated  here — he  is  busily 
employed  in  writing  an  introductory  discourse 
to  the  Athenaeum  lectures^ — Reviews  for  the 
London  Scientific  journal;  to  which  he  has 
contributed  several  able  papers — and  Reviews 
for  Walsh's  New  Review,  which  is  to  amaze  the 
world  on  the  i  March  next. — I  do  not  know 
what  Paulding  is  doing — ^he  seldom  mixes 
with  his  friends — &  lives  a  life  of  complete 
seclusion.  His  Brother  has  just  been  re- 
instated to  the  honors  of  the  Mayoralty,  to 
the  great  discomforture  of  poor  Hone,  who 
during  his  reign  of  a  year  did  every  thing  both 
officially  &  individually  to  entitle  himself  to 
a  reelection. — But  his  opponents,  upon  politi- 
cal grounds,  as  they  alledge,  thrust  him  oiit 
of  the  office  with  the  most  indecent  haste  and 
animosity.  I  think  he  had  no  good  reason  to 
expect  a  reelection,  but  the  manner  in  which 
he  was  dismissed,  was  a  gratuitous  insult  to 

the  pride  of  a  very  worthy  and  honorable  man. 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  iL*  1827 

But  "sic  transit  &c."  I  am  very  sorry  for  his 
mortification. — Nicolson  is  still  cmising  in  his 
stout  little  man  of  war — the  Ontario  in  the 
Mediterranean — ^he  writes  me,  that  he  is  to 
return  next  spring  or  summer.  He  is  intimate 
with  heroes,  both  Grecian  &  Barbarian — ■ 
(Mavrocordato  &  the  Capulan  Pasha — )  the 
latter  Jack  thinks  bears  a  striking  resemblance 
in  hight  &  rotundity  etc  &c  to  himself,  except 
his  being  rather  bow-legged  and  much  addicted 
to  the  sea  sickness. — The  worthy  little  Capt  is 
deep  in  classical  lore — ^he  has  anchored  his 
ship  in  the  Piraeus — approached  the  Acropolis, 
mounted  upon  a  Donkey — dug  up  the  graves 
of  sundry  Atheneans  at  Milo  &  sent  me  some 
beautiful  relics  of  antient  Terra  Cotta  &c, 
&c.  He  has  moreover  fathered  some  Greek 
orphans  &  saved  the  lives  of  others. — But 
above  all — ^he  has  kept  his  ship  in  the  most 
perfect  condition  &  lived  in  the  utmost  har- 
mony with  his  officers. — 

Bradish  is  passing  the  Winter  among  us  & 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  iL*  1827 

deals  out  his  stores  of  knowledge  with  becom- 
ing modesty  &  high  breeding. — He  is  the  glass 
of  fashion  &  pink  of  fastidiousness. — ^A  matri- 
monial connexion  "prudently  conducted"  I 
have  no  doubt  would  complete  his  happiness. 
— By  the  by — speaking  of  matrimony — I 
cannot  help  alluding  to  that  scurvy  jest  my 
old  &  Blackwood  played  upon  you. — M' 
Clay  was  here  about  the  time  the  rumour 
reached  us — ^he  made  many  kind  inquiries 
after  you  &  laughed  in  a  most  unstatesmanlike 
manner  at  the  villany  of  old  Ebony. — Ren- 
wick,  who  is  a  huge  consumer  of  Parmesan 
Cheese — ^was  on  the  point  of  bespeaking  your 
bounty  in  that  choice  viand.  I  tried  to  hoax 
my  wife  by  pretending  that  I  had  rec"^  a 
letter  from  you  announcing  your  nuptials — 
deifying  the  lovely  Empress — and  asking 
us  to  pass  the  winter  at  your  Court. — She 
declared  positively  that  the  E — ^was  tmworthy 
of  you  &  that  she  would  forbid  the  banns. — 

Young  Cutting  who  (I  believe)  you  &  your 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  il*  1827 

Brother  met  at  Bordeaux  is  engaged  to  be 
married  to  Miss  Hejrward — a  daughter  of  the 
old  H  who  married  Miss  Cruger. — She  is  a 
great  favourite  of  mine  &  of  every  one  indeed 
who  is  acquainted  with  her. — He  seems  every 
way  worthy  of  such  good  fortune  &  I  hope  he 
will  not  be  disappointed. 

G  K*  is  going  on  very  prosperously  with 
his  foundry — ^he  talks  as  usual  of  setting  down 
soberly  in  Hfe  &  begetting  his  own  images — 
but  he  is  an  incorrigible  bachelor.  Ver 
Planck  is  you  know  in  Congress;  he  has  not 
yet  done  any  thing  to  distinguish  himself 
from  the  multitudes  of  aye  &  no  gentlemen — 
but  he  is  highly  though  (t)  of  by  the  house. — 
Mr.  Spy  Cooper  is  now  in  Paris — shaving 
xec^.  the  barren  appointment  of  Consul  at 
Lyons — ^part  of  his  new  novel  "The  Prairie"  is 
here  &  in  the  press. — I  hope  you  will  see  him — 
he  has  a  rough  &  confident  manner  of  express- 
ing himself,  but  you  will  find  him  a  right  good 

*  Gouverneur  Kemhle, 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  iL*  1827 

fellow  at  bottom. — ^He  was  accustomed  to 
amuse  us  at  "The  Lunch '\with  disputations 
on  the  french  language. — The  person  who 
instructed  him  made  him  very  h3^ercritical 
in  the  niceties  of  pronouns  &  particles  to  the 
great  amusement  of  Ch^  King  &  others  who 
are  masters  of  the  language. — I  should  like 
to  know  whether  he  thinks  the  Parisians  do  in 
point  of  fact  speak  french  correctly. — 

Old  M-  Lord,  whose  daughter  he  married 
some  months  since — ^lately  died  &  left  her 
40  or  50,000^ — ^which  could  not  have  fallen 
into  better  hands. — King  is  still  the  editor  of 
the    Am:    having    dissolved    copart?    with 

Johnston  Ver   P *  his    talents    are   not 

happily  displayed  in  his  vocation. — ^John 
King  has  gone  to  Washington — ^we  talk  of 
giving  him  a  complimentary  dinner  in  a 
private  way  on  his  return. — ^Amongst  the 
changes  that  are  ever  taking  place  in  this 
variable  community,  I  think  you  must  have 

*  Veiplanck. 

VOL.  II. — II.  161 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  i!*  1827 

deplored  the  downfall  of  the  old  firm  of  Le  Roy- 
Bayard  &  C° — TJaeir  misfortunes  have  been 
long  impending — everyone  seems  to  rejoice 
that  the  worthy  old  gentleman  left  the  world 
and  its  miseries  before  the  failure  of  the  House. 

— ^William    B ^will    be    left    pennyless — 

Robert's  wife's  fortune  is  partly  settled  upon 
herself  &  her  children, — They  owe  very  large 
Slims  in  Europe — ^here,  their  obligations  are 
not  so  great. — Old  Major  Fairlie  awoke  from 
a  long  fit  of  dotage  or  misanthropy  some  six 
or  seven  months  ago  to  the  great  relief  of 
family  &  his  fds. — It  was  brought  about  by 
an  a,rtifice  of  his  fds  who  prevailed  with  the 
Chief  Justice  to  write  him  a  Letter,  intimating 
the  necessity  that  existed  of  appointing  a 
successor  to  his  office  of  Clerk  to  the  Sup- 
Court. — This  exasperated  the  old  gentleman's 
energies,  to  such  a  degree,  that  he  immed^ 
sallied  forth  from  his  apartment  to  the  City 
Hall  &  he  has  continued  to  do  so  ever  since — 

renovated  in  spirits  &  full  of  pithy  sayings. — 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  i!i  1827 

Charley  Miller  a  noted  usurer  lost  a  large 
sum  which  he  had  invested  in  Bonds  of  the 
Life  &  Fire  Ins.  Company;  after  wear[y]ing 
Hone  &  other  Dignitaries  to  stretch  forth  the 
arm  of  power  against  the  swindling  directors 
— ^in  vain — ^he  unbosomed  his  griefs  to  the 
Major.  The  old  Gent  told  him  to  go  home  & 
seek  for  consolation  by  reading  the  scriptures 
— ^referring  him  particularly  to  that  passage 
in  which  Paul  says  "I  w^  to  God  that  not 
only  thou,  but  all  that  hear  me  this  day,  were 
both  almost  &  altogether  such  as  I  am,  except 
these  bonds." — ^When  he  heard  of  the  death 
of  Jefferson  &  Adams  &  that  M'  Carroll 
was  now  the  only  surviving  signer  of  the 
declaration  of  Ind:  he  observed — Well!  the  old 
boy  is  left  in  a  fearful  minority.  .  .  .  These 
are  from  among  dozens  of  his  witticisms — 
M"  C*  still  resides  at  Bristol  but  visits  us 
occasionally — she  is  very  little  changed  in 
personal    appearance — although    she    has  (I 

*  Mrs.  Thomas  A.  Cooper — Irving' s  friend,  Mary  Fairlie. 

NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  i!!  1827 

believe)  eight  children — the  eldest  Mary, 
nearly  a  woman  grown. — Miss  Louisa,  who 
has  all  the  cleverness  of  her  father,  seems  to  be 
too  keen  for  the  sensibilities  of  her  beaux. — 

My  good  old  parents  are  still  in  the  enjoy- 
ment of  health  &  contentment.  My  father 
comes  to  the  City  (as  he  calls  it)  once  in  four 
years  to  go  the  rounds  with  me,  and  wonder 
at  the  novelties  of  the  age. — 

I  beg  my  kindest  regards  to  your  Brother 
Peter — I  hope  he  remembers  our  adventures 
in  the  great  world  with  as  much  pleasure  as  I 
do;  they  have  furnished  me  with  agreeable 
reminiscences  ever  since. — I  w"?  request  you 
to  present  my  regards  to  M-  Everett,  but  that 
it  is  more  than  probable  that  he  has  forgotten 
me. — 

I  am  My  d-  I,  ever  affecV  Y? 

H.  B. 



New,   York,  Nov.  ig^  1827. 


Your  kind  &  affectionate  letter  of  the  4 
April  reached  me  about  six  weeks  ago,  and  I 
need  not  assure  you  that  it  has  removed  from 
my  mind  every  cause  of  complaint  &  I  beg 
that  the  warmth  with  which  I  expressed 
myself  on  the  subject  may  be  forgotten. — 

Your  life  &c  of  Columbus  has  been  put  to 
press — ^judging  from  the  first  sheet  which  your 
brother  shewed  me  yesterday, '  you  will  no 
doubt  be  pleased  with  the  manner  in  which  it 
will  be  printed. 

The  edit:  will  comprise  about  2000  Copies. 

— ^As  to  offering  any  conjectures  or  auguries 

of  the  reception  which  it  is  like  to  receive 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  19^^  1827 

from  the  public — they  would  be  idle  at  present. 
Many  persons  of  the  highest  literary  standing 
among  us  (Halleck  Bryant  &  others)  have 
expressed  their  satisfaction  upon  hearing  that 
you  were  engaged  on  a  subject  which  they 
think  properly  belongs  to  us — so  that  you 
have  every  reason  to  expect  a  candid  &  friendly 
reception.  Indeed  I  must  say  that  no  author 
enjoys  a  higher  place  in  the  esteem  of  the 
public  than  yourself.  Depend  upon  it  my  dear 
Irving,  whatever  you  may  have  been  induced 
to  believe'to  the  contrary,  that  you  have  every 
reason  to  be  satisfied  with  the  kindly  feelings 
of  your  countrymen,  so  far  as  I  am  enabled 
to  judge. — I  fear  that  in  composing  this  work 
you  have  subjected  yourself  to  excessive 
labour  &  fatigue,  but  as  you  do  not  complain 
of  ill  health  I  trust  your  mind  has  been 
relieved  by  the  novelty  of  your  researches. 
I  long  to  see  you  return  to  works  of  imagina- 
tion. But  the  exploits  of  these  daring  dis- 
coveries of  new  worlds  really  to  my  mind 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  ig^^  1827 

possess  the  truth  of  history  with  the  wildest 
charms  of  romance.  Colimibus  stands  at  the 
head  of  them — ^both  as  to  boldness  of  exploit 
&  real  dignity  &  nobleness  of  mind  &  character. 
— I  hope  you  will  be  cheered  by  every  sort 
of  success  both  here  and  in  Europe. — 

Our  old  friends  are  all  well — Kemble  is 
going  on  yery  prosperously — Harry  Ogden  is 
now  in  New  York — a  prosperous  and  lusty 
looking  gentleman.  Paulding  I  regret  to  say 
(about  two  months  since)  lost  one  of  his 
children — ^it  died  at  the  Foundry  after  a  few 
days  illness. — My  own  family — ^wife  &  5 
children  are  all  in  good  health,  after  having 
past  the  summer  very  quietly  at  the  old 
cottage  at  Hemshook — Hellgate.  I  have 
fished  in  every  nook  &  comer  of  that  old  un- 
grateful ground  until  my  skin  was  as  sunburnt 
as  old  Mud  Sam. — My  father  &  mother  are 
yet  in  the  full  enjoyment  of  health  &  spirits. 
The  old  gentleman  has  just  passed  his  8o*> 

year — ^with  no  other  annoyance  to  his  happi- 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  19*  1827 

ness,  but  the  encroachment  of  the  City  upon 
his  domains. — The  Professor*  &  his  family  are 
very  well  &  agreeably  situated  in  the  College. 

You  mentioned  in  your  letter  Halleck  & 
Bryant — they  are  both  members  of  "The 
Lunch"  a  social  club  which  has  been  in  exist- 
ence here  for  several  years.-7-When  you  come 
to  us,  I  know  you  will  have  great  enjoyment 
in  their  society  &  in  that  of  the  Lunch.  They 
are  shy  men  &  are  very  little  seen  in  society. 
Halleck  is  Secretary  of  an  Ins:  Comp^ — 
Bryant  lives  by  his  pen.  They  are  un- 
doubtedly men  of  very  high  endowments. 
Halleck  regretted  that  he  did  not  meet  you 
some  years  since^ — I  gave  him  a  letter  to  you, 
but  I  believe  you  were  in  Germany. — 

On  Thursday  last  M-  Emmett  was  seized 
with  apoplexy  in  the  Court  &  expired  in  ten 
hours.  I  was  sitting  as  a  juror  very  near  to 
him  &  I  never  witnessed  a  scene  of  more 
heartrending  distress.     He  could  not  be  re- 

*  James  Renwick. 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  ig^l  1827 

moved  for  several  hours,  during  which  his 

father  came  in  &  suffered  beyond  description. 

He  never  felt  a  moments  pain. — Pray  give 

my    affectionate    regards    to    my    excellent 

friend  your  brother  Peter. 

I  hope  his  health  is  quite  restored. — 
Nicolson  is  still  at  his  station — I  believe  he 

will  be  ordered  back  very  soon. — Believe  me 

my  dear  Irving  ever 

affec?  Y! 

H.  B.  y. 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19*^  1827 
New  York,  December  ip-  1827. 


I  wrote  to  you  some  time  since,  to  the  care 
of  B  Henry  Gibraltar,  but  I  doubt  whether 
my  letter  has  reached  you. — Your  life  of 
Columbus  is  going  through  the  press  &  will  be 
ready  for  publication  by  the  middle  of  March, 
or  sooner  if  practicable.  At  first  your  brother 
determined  to  follow  your  directions  &  publish 
it  in  two  Vol^  but  the  thickness  of  the  paper 
&  the  quantity  of  the  matter  would  make 
them  too  btdky,  and  he  now  thinks  of  extend- 
ing it  to  three  Vol^  of  about  450  pages  each. 
In  this  form  it  will  be  more  acceptable  to  the 
booksellers — ^nor  will  it  be  necessary  to  dis- 
join the  Books  &  Chapters. — The  Map  which 
you  sent  will  be  neatly  lithographed  &  re- 
duced to  about  half  the  size. — 

The  very  liberal  manner  in  which  Murray 

has  dealt  with  you,  has  been  made  public 

through  the  Boston  Newspapers  and  will  we 

think  induce  Cary  to  make  proposals  for  the 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19th  1827 

edition. — I  have  advised  your  brother  to  let 
him  have  it  at  a  liberal  discount  say  35  or  40 
per  Cent,  which  would  still  leave  a  clear  gain 
of  about  ^3000. 

Cary's  influence  as  a  publisher  is  so  poten- 
tial, that  it  is  desirable  he  should  have  the 
disposal  of  the  work. — Like  Murray  he  has 
become  the  proprietor  of  a  quarterly  Review— 
["]  The  Am:  q^  Review,"  which  has  been  in 
existence  for  a  year  &  has  a  very  wide  circula- 
tion.— Master  Walsh  is  the  Editor.  Thus  far 
he  has  been  aided  by  some  of  our  best  writers 
&  the  review  is  pretty  well  kept  up — He  pays 
two  dollars  the  page. — 

Renwick  has  furnished  an  article  for  each 
of  the  numbers — one  on  ChampoUon — one  on 
Shipbuilding — one  on  Egyptian  Chronology 
&  a  short  notice  of  Weights  &  Measures. — 

He  has  another  ready  for  the  forthcoming 

March  number,   &   proposes   to  prepare  a 

review  of  your  Work  provided  Walsh  has  room 

for  it — ^this  he  will  ascertain  in  a  few  days. 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19th  1827 

Should  there  be  room  left,  the  review  will 
appear  a  short  time  before  the  Work  itself, 
but  a  similar  anachronism  occurred  in  two 
articles  on  Scott's  Napoleon  which  preceded 
the  publication  of  the  Work  nearly  six  months, 
— Sir  Walter's  Book  was  greatly  aided  by  the 
review  &  many  thousand  copies  have  been 

It  will  also  be  desirable  to  supplant  Master 
Walsh  in  laying  his  unhallowed  hands  upon 
your  Work;  he  is  too  vindictive  to  be  trusted 
with  the  power  of  sitting  in  judgment  upon 
you. — 

I  know  that  you  disclaim  all  critical  sup- 
port but  be  assured  that  here,  as  in  England, 
the  public  taste  is  very  much  influenced 
&  governed  by  reviewers.  Possibly  I  judge 
Walsh,  too  harshly,  but  he  has  shewn  in 
his  last  number  how  ungenerously  he  can 
avenge  an  old  editorial  grudge  by  a  bitter 
condemnation   of   Carter's  travels.      Should 

his    forth-coming   number   be   already   pre- 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19!^  1827 

occupied  you  will  have  to  stand  over  for 
the  next. — 

I  was  very  much  surprised  to  learn  from 
your  nephew  that  some  caitiff  had  taken  the 
trouble  to  annoy  you  by  sending  a  collection 
of  scraps  of  censure  which  have  appeared  in 
the  news  papers.  Rely  upon  it,  they  were 
beneath  your  notice — I  take  upon  myself  to 
afHrm  that  your  character  &  ptirsuits  are  held 
by  your  countrymen  in  the  most  endearing 
estimation,  and  whenever  I  shall  have  the 
happiness  of  again  welcoming  you  home,  you 
will  find  my  opinion  confirmed  to  your  hearts 
content. — 

All    our    old    friends    are    well — Paulding 

Kemble  Ogden  &c  &c. — My  wife  &  children 

are  all  as  I  could  wish  them. — My  boys  are 

growing   up   apace   &   promise   fairly. — Our 

mode  of  life  is  quiet  &  domestic  &  the  events 

of  a  day  are  succeeded  by  scarcely  any  novelty. 

I  have  been  sadly  perplexed  for  nearly  three 

years  past  by  an  accidental  involvement  to 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  ig^l  1827 

nearly  the  whole  extent  of  my  means — ^but  by 
dint  of  exertion  I  think  I  shall  escape  without 
a  heavy  loss.  First,  I  was  misled  into  the 
purchase  of  a  great  nximber  of  lots  on  Stuy- 
vesants  meadows  by  a  joint  purchase  under  a 
belief  that  I  was  bound  for  only  an  eight[h] 
part  of  them — ^but  owing  to  the  insolvency 
of  my  copartners — nearly  the  whole  purchase 
was  left  upon  my  hands,  with  the  prospect  of 
330,000  loss — ^but  the  lots  are  beginning  to 
acquire  a  value  &  I  hope  to  get  rid  of  the 
burthen  without  a  great  loss. — Next,  I  was 
caught  with  40,000^  stock  in  the  Bank  of 
Montreal,  thinking  that  the  money  could  not 
be  better  placed.  I  had  suffered  it  to  remain 
for  twelve  years.  Owing  however  to  the 
failure  of  half  a  dozen  of  the  old  Scotch  houses 
&  the  misconduct  of  the  President  (M- 
Gerrard)  in  whom  my  confidence  was  un- 
limited, the  affairs  of  the  Bank  became  deeply 
involved  and  have  remained  so  for  nearly 

three  years. — At  present  I  have  the  prospect 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19th  1827 

of  escaping  with  a  loss  of  20,000^. — The 
experience  that  I  have  gained  is  rather  dearly 
bought,  but  I  am  content  &  shall  endeavour 
to  profit  by  it  for  the  future. — 

My  father  &  mother  are  still  in  the  enjoy- 
ment of  health  &  contentment.  The  sole 
annoyance  of  the  good  old  patriarch  is  the 
inroads  of  the  Corporation  who  will  persist  in 
raising  the  value  of  his  land  by  cutting  it  up 
into  streets,  &  burthening  him  by  assessments. 
The  old  Gentleman  rebels  &  talks  of  the  purity 
of  the  olden  time,  but  is  obliged  to  submit. — 

D  Lynch  returned  from  Europe  lately. 
His  affairs  are  in  disorder  owing  to  an  im- 
prudent speculation  in  Brandy — ^but  he  hopes 
to  retrieve  them  by  a  contract  which  he  has 
made  for  10  years  of  aU  the  wine  produced  by 
the  estate  of  Chateau  Margaux.  He  has  been 
figuring  at  the  Court  of  the  Lady  Lieutenant 
in  Dublin  &  sings  us  songs  composed  for  him 
by  Moore,  all  gaily  as  ever. — Luther  Bradish 

has  been  elected  to  the  Legislature  by  the 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19!^  1827 

County  of  Franklin,  being  a  large  landed 
proprietor  in  that  quarter — ^he  seems  highly- 
pleased  with  his  honors  &  I  doubt  not  will  do 
the  State  some  service. 

Paulding  had  the  misfortune  of  losing  one 
of  his  children  last  stammer — ^he  &  Gertrude 
have  been  in  deep  distress  by  this  sudden 
event. — ^He  continues  to  live  along  in  a  quiet 
way,  mixing  seldom  with  society  &  occa- 
sionally producing  a  work  of  merit.  He  is  a 
contributor  to  Walsh. — Kemble  sticks  close 
to  his  Fotmdry,  which  has  now  become  a  very 
extensive  &  profitable  concern. 

Renwick  as  you  justly  observe  is  making 
himself  known  by  the  depth  &  variety  of  his 
acquirements.  He  is  a  very  able  civil  engineer, 
&  is  often  employed  in  that  line. — He  writes 
for  Brand's  journal  &  is  in  close  correspond- 
ence with  Capt  Sabine  &  other  men  of 
eminent  scientific  standing. — He  has  four 
children;  three  boys  &  a  girl  &  lives  very 

independently  in  the  College. — His  Mother  is 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19th  1827 

just  the  same  as  you  left  her;  the  troubles  of 
the  world  (of  which  she  has  had  too  large  a 
share)  have  made  little  impression  upon  her. — 
Jane  is  married  to  a  son  of  John  Wilkes  (a 
Lieu*  in  the  Navy) — ^Agnes  is  engaged  to  be 
married  to  the  Rev^  M''.  Henry,  a  son  of 
M'  Henry  the  lawyer  in  Albany — ^John  is 
married  &  Hves  on  a  farm — Bobie  has  just 
returned  from  the  Western  Country — to  re- 
side in  N  Y. — W^  is  a  bachelor. 

VerPlanck  is  a  great  Jackson  man  &  sticks 
closely  to  his  congressional  duties — ^but  he 
does  not  make  a  figure  there.  Yoxur  old  f1 
Randolph  tritunphs  in  the  success  of  the 
Jackson  cause. — He  predicted  last  year  that 
John  the  2^  was  only  serving  out  the  term  of 
John  the  first,  which  is  like  to  be  prophetic. 
A  few  days  ago,  after  escorting  the  new 
Speaker  to  the  Chair  he  seized  an  Adams  man 
by  the  arm  &  pointing  to  the  Speaker,  asked 
whether  he  did  not  perceive  the  handwriting 
upon  the  wall. — His  health  is  exhausted. — 

VOL.  II. 12. 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  I9«i  1827 

Little  Cambreling  is  also  a  great  man.  Sam 
Swartwout  is  in  hopes  of  becoming  a  great 
man — Shaving  been  one  of  Jackson's  sturdiest 
supporters. — Charles  King  has  laboured  hard 
for  the  Adams  cause  &  has  reaped  no  reward. — 

The  pugnacious  character  of  our  citizens 
still  continues.  Lately  a  M-  Barton  of  Phil: 
killed  a  M-  Graham  at  Hoboken  in  a  duel, 
provoked  by  the  latter — Graham  was  assist- 
ant editor  to  Noah  &  had  made  himself  very 
obnoxious  by  his  satire  upon  what  Charles 
King  foolishly  called  "good  society. "  He  was 
a  man  of  great  talents  and  had  passed  a  life 
of  adventure  in  England  &  mixed  with  all 
classes  of  society. — Since  then  D-  Hosack 
sent  Cad  Colden  with  a  challenge  to  D- 
Watts — ^which  produced  an  apology.  Yester- 
day— a  challenge  was  sent  by  M-  Henry 
Eckford  to  Maxwell  (the  Dis^  Att?)  the 
cause  of  which  grew  out  of  the  late  indict- 
ments for  conspiracy — Maxwell  very  properly 

handed  the  challenge  to  the  Police.    Whether 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  19^  1827 

the  Shipbuilder  intended  to  use  the  Broadaxe 
or  the  pistol  I  know  not. — He  is  rather  a 
naauvaise*  sujet. — Our  City  is  besett  with 
Theatres — ^all  of  which  seem  to  get  on  success- 

The  Ladies  of  ton  give  soir6es  every  Tues- 
day &  send  their  cards  to  their  fds  of  fashion. — 

My  wife  enjoins  me  to  offer  her  kindest 
regards. — Pray  give  my  affec*  remembrances 
to  y^  brother  Peter — 

I  am    My  d-  Irving 
ever  Y? 
H.  Brevoort,  J' 

Jack  Nicolson  is  to  return  to  the  U  States 
in  the  course  of  the  Winter. 



NEW  YORK,  MAY  311*  1828 

New  York,  May  31-  1828. 


I  have  received  your  letter  dated  Madrid 
22>^^  february  &  have  delayed  answering  it 
until  I  could  speak  confidently  of  the  reception 
of  your  life  of  Columbus. — I  can  now  assure 
you  of  its  complete  success. — The  opinions 
of  Chancellor  Kent  P  A  Jay  W  Johnston 
Prof:  Moore  Halleck  &  many  others  of  the 
same  class  of  readers  place  it  in  the  first  rank 
of  historical  compositions — They  are  struck 
with  the  dignity  of  your  style — the  depth  of 
your  researches — your  clear  &  unbroken  narra- 
tive of  events  &  above  all  with  the  romantic 
interest  which  you  have  infused  into  every 
portion  of  the  work. — All  seemed  gratified 
that  the  discoverer  of  the  new  world  should 
have  found  a  biographer,  worthy  of  his  fame, 
in  one  of  its  sons,  &  it  is  certain  that  you  could 
not  have  employed  your  time  &  talents 
upon  a  happier  subject,  or  on  one  of  more 

dignified  interest  to  readers  in  this  quarter 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  311*  1828 

of  the  globe.     I  do  hope  that  this  universal 

concurrence  of  opinion  as  to  the  value  of  your 

labours  amongst  us,  will  at  once  banish  from 

your  mind  every  feeling  of  distrust  as  to  the 

kindness  &  cordiality  of  your   countrymen; 

depend  upon  it  my  d'  Irving  that  they  are 

proud  of  your  name  and  speak  nobly  of  you. — 

If  peradventure  you  should  ever  chance  to  see 

that  notable  criticism  which  preceded  your 

work  in  Walsh's  Review,  it  may  account  to 

you  for  the  eagerness  with  which  y^  work  is 

read;    it  being  the  united  wisdom  of  three 

great  writers — ^the  introduction  by  y^  htimble 

servant — ^the   criticism   by   Renwick   &   the 

extracts  by  Walsh. — 

I  understand  from  the  Carvils  that  more 

than  2/2,^?  of  the  edition  is  sold ;  they  are  highly 

pleased  with  being  the  publishers  &  are  very 

anxious  to  get  possession  of  any  future  work 

from  your  pen. — ^Your  brother,  as  he  no  doubt 

has  informed  you,  has  concluded  with  Gary 

a  sale  of  all  the  copies  of  your  former  works, 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  31L*  1828 

at  about  the  cost  of  printing — he  has  moreover 

sold  to  them  the  priveledge  of  printing  & 

publishing  them  under  certain  conditions  for 

the  next  seven  years,  for  the  annual  payment 

of  ^600. — This  arrangement  I  feel  satisfied 

will  please  you — ^first  you  will  be  a  gainer  in 

money — second  your  writings,  in  their  hands 

&  under  their  management  will  be  pushed 

into  a  much  wider  circulation  amongst  a  new 

class  of  readers  to  whom  they  have  hitherto 

been   nearly   inaccessible.     It   is   thus   that 

Cooper's  Works  have  been  made  productive; 

had  they  been  published  in  the  shape  that 

yours  have  been,  they  would  neither  have 

brought  him  bread  nor  reputation. — Besides 

your  brother  will  be  relieved  from  a  great  deal 

of  labour  &  care. — 

I  take  it  for  granted  that  you  will   have 

returned  to  France   by  the    time  this  will 

arrive.    We  have  accounts  of  the  return  of  y? 

brother  &  that  his  health  was  mending. — I 

have  little  to  tell  you  of  my  own  affairs — • 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  31!*  1828 

about    a   week    since    M"    B    brought   into 

the  world  a  daughter  &  I  am  happy  to  say  is 

quite  well.    You  see  my  dear  fellow  that  my 

works    are    nearly    as    numerous    as    yours; 

whether  they  will  live  as  long  &  be  as  kindly 

treated  by  the  world  is  rather  questionable. — 

One  thing  is  certain,  that  I  am  determined 

this  shall  be  the  last. — 

Paulding  has  a  Work  in  the  press,  but  I  know 

not  what  the  subject  is. — His  son  Kemble  & 

one  of  mine  are  great  cronies  &  are  in  the  same 

latin  class — ^he  is  a  very  fine  little  fellow  &  bids 

fair  to  be  as  quaint  &  odd  as  his  father.    Gouv. 

Kemble  is   very   rich — Capt   Jack  returned 

some  time  since  from  his  five  years  cruise — ^he 

is  as  usual  high  in  favour  with  the  Ladies  & 

has  the  entr6  to  every  family  of  distinction  in 

the  town  of  Gotham. — I  cannot  perceive  that 

he  is  in  the  least  changed — except  that  he 

talks  rather  ad  libitum  of  the  fine  arts,  genuine 

taste,  &c,  &c. — The  Renwicks  are  as  usual. 

My  father  &  mother  continue  in  the  land  of  the 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  31!?  1828 

living.  The  old  Gent"?  has  lately  become 
much  renowned — shaving  cured  the  Earl  of 
Huntingdon  of  dropsey  by  the  use  of  a  root 
called  Indian  Hemp  (apocinum  cannabinum). 
He  would  in  the  opinion  of  Hosack  have  died 
in  twelve  hours,  had  it  not  been  for  the  hemp, 
which  by  the  merest  accident  I  happened  to 
think  of.  It  effected  the  same  miracle  on  the 
old  gentleman  &  a  child  of  Renwick's,  who 
was  at  the  point  of  death  of  dropsey  in  the 
head.  The  poor  Earl  is  very  grateful — &  sails 
for  England  today. — 

Pray  give  my  kindest  regards  to  your  brother 
&  believe  me  my  d-  Irving  ever  Y? 

H.  Brevoort,  y. 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  30th  1829 

New  York,  March  30-  182Q. 


Belieying  that  you  will  have  returned 
from  your  long  sojourn  in  Spain  by  the  time 
this  letter  will  reach  France,  I  shall  enclose 
it  to  your  brother — I  have  received  your 
letter  dated  the  24  December — The  pirate 
had  struck  his  flag,  before  the  arrival  of  your 
Abridgement,  and  nothing  delays  its  publica- 
tion, but  the  time  given  by  your  brother  to  the 
Carvils,  being  unexpired — I  mean  the  time 
given  for  the  sale  of  the  edition  of  the  Life. 
Very  few  copies  remain  to  be  sold.  I  do  not 
doubt  that  the  Abridgement  will  have  a  very 
wide  circulation;  it  will  be  an  excellent  school 
book.  The  Chronicle  is  waiting  until  news 
arrive  of  its  being  published  in  London. 
Cary  has  put  forth  a  neat  edition  of  your 
Works,  which  will  bring  them  before  a  class 
of  readers  to  whom  they  were,  in  a  manner,  a 
sealed  book. — I  do  admire  your  perseverance 

&  industry  in  digging  up  ore  from  those  mines 


NEW'  YORK,  MARCH  30"!  1829 

of  the  Indias,  to  which  you  are  so  fortunate 
as  to  have  access.  You  seem  to  my  imagina- 
tion like  another  Belzoni,  working  among  the 
tomes — not  tombs — in  the  cathedral  library 
at  Seville. 

It  is  delightful  to  think  of  the  enduring 
name  that  you  have  already  acquired  &  the 
rapid  advances  which  you  are  making,  at  the 
same  time,  towards  independence. — 

The  enquiries  you  make  about  all  our  old 

friends,  now  fast  approaching  the  yellow  leaf, 

conveys  an  intimation,  that  you  will  return 

amongst  them — Come  when   you   will,   you 

will  find  them  true  to  you  and  ready  to  unite 

with   you   in   renewing   scenes    of   youthful 

enjoyment. — ^As  to  myself,   I  do  believe,   I 

might  pass  myself  off  abroad,   for  a  fresh 

bachellor  of  35 — but  the  malice  of  my  seniors 

delights  in  throwing  some  dozen  years  more 

over  my  head,  in  order  to  avenge  themselves 

for    the    dilapidations    of    time  —  But    the 

youngest  of  us,  is,  &  ever  will  be,  the  Super- 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  36*  1829 

caxgo — ^he  will  be   a  boy  at  fourscore — He 

has  lately  been  showing  off  under  various 

disguises  at  the  nvunerous  masquerades  which 

now  infest  this  crack  brained  City. — Captain 

Jack  has   dissolved   his  bachellor's   concern 

with  William  Bayard  &  come  down  to  the 

lower  part  of  the  City — His  days  are  passed  in 

devotion  to  the  ladies — ^he  is  in  the  bowels 

of  every  ones  confidence — eating  the  good 

dinners  &  caprioling  with  the  daughter  of  a 

score  of  wealthy  burgomasters — falling  in  & 

out   of   love   without   wounding   his   amour 

propre,  or  lessening  his  rotundity  a  single  inch. 

The  latter  evil  is  encreased,  goes  on  encreas- 

ing,  &  ought  to  be  diminished — and  I  verily 

believe  Jack's  happiness  would  be  complete, 

if  the  gods  would  lessen  his  girth  &  reduce 

him.  within  the  limits  of  sentimentality. — But 

there    are    better    men    than    Jack,    whose 

troubles  have  been  seated  in  the  belly. — As 

to   Paulding,    he   continues   to   lead   a   sort 

of  Terrapin's  life — sometimes  when  the  sun 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  30«1  1829 

shines,  he  puts  forth  his  head  &  walks  up 
Broad  Way  but  there  is  no  use  in  striving  to 
bring  him  into  habits  of  social  intercourse — 
they  seem  to  have  become  irksome  to  him. 
Although  we  live  within  two  hundred  yards 
of  each  other,  we  might  just  as  well  be  sepa- 
rated by  so  many  leagues. — He  writes  Books, 
but  they  are  the  products  of  a  mind  at  war 
with  every  thing — a  mind  too,  that  seems  to 
have  stood  still,  whilst  all  the  world  has  been 
advancing  in  knowledge.  So  much  so,  as  to 
have  fairly  outgrown  him  &  the  things  that 
dwell  in  him. — Gouv:  Kemble  passes  most  of 
his  time  in  the  Highlands,  occupied  in  his 
extensive  manufacturing  concerns. — He  is  the 
same  good  fellow  that  nature  made  him. 
William  is  the  grand  financier  of  those  estab- 
lishments, &  bids  fair  to  die  as  rich  as  old 
Astor — He  seems  to  have  been  made  of 
different  material  from  the  other  members 
of  the  family,  &  I  cannot  say  that  I  admire 

him  or  his  talent. — The  Professor  is  well  & 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  aoili  1829 

often  talks  of  you — so  does  his  excellent 
mother — She  looks  nearly  as  well  as  when  you 
left  us — &  her  spirits  are  as  good  &  her  heart 
just  as  warm  as  ever. — 

Master  Sam:  Swartwout,  has  just  emerged 
from  years  of  embarrassment  &  is  to  be  made 
Collector  in  place  of  Thompson — Harry  Og- 
den  is  to  be  his  Cashier  with  a  good  salary, 
upon  certain  conditions. — I  understand  James 
•  A  Hamilton,  is  to  have  the  place  of  Consul  in 
Paris. — The  new  Pres:*  seems  determined  to 
provide  for  those  who  have  bawled  loudest  in 
his  praises — ; 

God  Bless  you  my  d-  f^ 


*  Andrew  Jackson. 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  30th  1829 

New  York,  April  30-  182Q. 


I  wrote  to  you  not  long  ago,  under  cover  to 
your  brother  Peter. — Since  then  your  brother 
Ebenezer  has  sold  to  the  Mess"  Carvill, 
for  ^6000  payable  at  reasonable  periods,  the 
right  of  publishing  for  five  years,  your  Life  of 
Columbus,  as  well  as  the  Abridgement.  The 
latter  will  soon  appear  in  a  neat  octavo 
stereotyped,  &  the  former,  they  are  prepared 
to  put  to  press  so  soon  as  a  corrected  copy  is 
received  from  you. — ^A  very  small  ntmiber  of 
the  copies  of  the  first  edition  remain  tmsold. — 
I  will  briefly  explain  why  your  wishes  were  not 
complied  with,  and  that  the  Carvills  instead 
of  Gary  have  become  the  purchasers. — You 
may  remember  when  the  MS  of  the  Life  was 
received  by  your  brother,  he  offered  the  work 
to  Gary  &  that  he  replied  in  so  cold  &  dis- 
couraging a  manner,  that  we  were  led  to 
believe  from  some  causes  unknown  to  us,  he 

was  rather  disposed  to  decline  it,  tinless  he 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  30!^  1829 

could  obtain  it  upon  his  own  terms. — In  this 
dilemma  the  Carvills  promptly  came  for- 
ward &  purchased  the  edition,  thus  relieving 
your  brother  from  any  further  bargaining  on 
the  part  of  Gary.  No  doubt  he  since  regrets, 
that  the  work  was  permitted  to  slip  from  his 
hands,  and  it  must  be  conceded  that  he  has 
behaved  very  liberally  in  the  purchases  that 
he  has  subsequently  made  of  your  Works — 
but  in  this  particular  instance  the  blame  lay 
solely  with  himself. — Now  when  the  Carvills 
lately  proposed  for  the  second  edition  &c. 
your  brother  &  myself  held  a  consultation,  & 
determined  that  it  wotild  be  treating  them 
illiberally  to  reject  them  without  even  naming 
a  price;  accordingly  we  fixed  it  at  ^6000  a 
price  which  we  did  not  believe  they  would 
give,  in  which  case  we  intended  to  let  Gary 
have  the  Works;  but  to  our  surprise,  the  little 
men  were  not  to  be  frightened,  &  very 
promptly  concluded  the  purchase. 

With  this  explanation  I  am  certain  you  will 

NEW  YORK,  APRIL  30th  1829 

be  reconciled  with  a  departure  from  your 

wishes  as  to  Gary — ^in  fact,  you  must  have 

done  as  we  have  done,  had  you  been  upon  the 

spot,  nor  has  Gary  any  cause  to  be  dissatisfied. 

As   in   the  instance   of   the   Gonquest   of 

Granada,  the  next  work  that  you  send  your 

brother  may  be  at  once  offered  to  Gary;  but 

I  cannot  help  thinking  that  it  is  bad  policy 

on  your   part   to   restrict   your   brother   to 

a  single  pvirchaser;  competition  will  always 

encrease  the  price,  without  hazarding  in  the 

least,    the    success    of    your    productions. — 

Nevertheless,   I  agree  with  you  that   Gary 

ought  to  become  the  purchaser  in  aU  cases  in 

which  he  may  be  disposed  to  come  up  to  the 

price  demanded — I  speak  with  reference  to 

any  of  your  future  writings,  for  no  better 

reason  however  than  his  being  in  possession 

of   all   of   them   excepting   Golumbus. — The 

Garvills  are  possessed  of  ample  means,  and 

their  capacity  to  extend  the  circulation  of 

your  Works  is  hardly  below  Gary's. — 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  3oih  1829 

The  Conquest  of  Granada,  has  just  been 
published,  and  so  far  as  I  can  learn,  it  is  very- 
much  liked.  It  is  beautifully  printed  (sterio- 
typed)  both  in  large  &  small  paper  &  I  doubt 
not  it  will  have  an  extensive  circulation. — 

If  you  are  not  worn  to  the  bone,  I  hope  you 
have  had  strength  left  to  write  another  work 
on  the  subject  of  American  discovery  &  con- 
quest— either  a  History  of  the  Conquest  of 
Cortes  or  Pisarro  or  both ;  it  would  be  an  ad- 
mirable sequel  to  the  Life  of  Columbus,  and  I 
think  that  you  might  then  rest  (for  a  time  at 
least)  from  your  labors  &  enjoy  the  rewards 
&  enjoyments  of  your  fame  and  your  industry. 
— Send  all  your  money  to  your  brother  &  order 
him.  to  invest  in  our  safest  securities  &  there 
let  it  remain — they  are  not  only  the  safest 
but  the  most  productive,  &  his  prudence  is 
fully  competent  to  choose  the  most  eligible 
securities. — 

This  is  so  much  of  a  matter  of  fact  business 
epistle  that  I  have  barely  room  to  add  that 

VOL.  II. 13.  193 

NEW  YORK,  APRIL  30th  1829 

my  wife  &  my  six  children  are  very  well  & 
that  I  am  as  usual,  rather  tired  of  the  sameness 
&  want  of  variety  excitment  &  all  the  rest, 
that  beset  the  life  of  a  man  in  this  Merchant 

I  wrote  to  your  brother  on  the  subject  of 
M-  Beasely;  and  expressed  my  fears  that 
some  one  of  the  general' s*  friends  would  find 
means  to  be  helped  to  his  Consulate — I  have 
heard  nothing  since,  to  alter  my  opinion  on 
the  subject. — He  seems  resolved  to  reward 
personal  services  without  much  regard  to 
qualification. — 

Sam  Swartwout  is  the  Collector — Noah — • 
the  inspector,  James  A  Hamilton  District 
Att^  in  place  of  John  Duer — his  particular 
friend.  With  many  other  appointments  & 
removals  from  trifling  ofl&ces — I  hope  Beasely 
has  been  able  to  show  good  cause  at  Washing- 
ton why  he  ought  to  retain  his  office  &  that 
he  has  some  powerful  friend  there  to  uphold 

*  Pres.  Jackson  was  often  called  by  his  military  title. 

NEW  YORK,  APRIL  30!!}  1829 

him. — Mr.  McLean  of  Delaware  is  app^ 
envoy  to  the  Court  of  S-  James — ^he  is  a  very 
fine  fellow  &  will  do  honor  to  his  Country. 
Edward  Livingston— has  been  offered  M? 
Brown's  place  with  a  given  time  to  make  up 
his  mind  on  the  subject. — I  think  he  will 
accept,  but  it  is  doubtfuU.  He  is  now  a 
Senator  from  Louisianna — ^rather  aged — & 
not  very  rich,  as  M-  Montgomery's  Estate, 
which  is  left  to  his  daughter,  does  not  promise 
to  be  very  large. — I  beg  my  kindest  regards 
to  your  brother  &  am  ever  affectionately  my 



H.  B.  jr 
Paulding  will  (it  is  said)  keep  his  office. — 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  31!*  1829 

New  York,  May  31-  iSsg. 


About  ten  days  ago  your  brother  the  Judge 
received  a  very  polite  letter  from  MI-  Secre- 
tary Van  Beuren  in  which  he  states  it  to  be 
the  intention  of  the  government  to  offer  you 
the  appointment  of  Secretary  of  Legation  in 
London,  and  is  desirous  of  ascertaining  whether 
you  would  accept  the  office. — The  Judge  & 
Ebenezer  upon  a  thorough  deliberation  of  the 
proposal  were  of  opinion  that  you  would  not, 
or  rather  that  you  ought  not  to  refuse,  in 
which  I  entirely  agree  with  them;  accordingly 
an  answer  was  written  to  the  Honble  Secre- 
tary to  this  effect, — and  I  think  there  is  no 
doubt  that  the  appointment  will  be  made, 
unless  a  pledge  be  required  for  your  accep- 
tance, which  your  brothers  probably  would 
not  think  themselves  authorized  to  make. 
When  Van  Beuren  wrote  the  Letter,  the 
Pres-  had  not  been  consulted  but  as  both  M° 

Lean  (the  Minister)  and  himself  were  desirous 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  31!*  1829 

of  offering  you  the  appointment  he  entertained 

no  doubt  that  he  wovdd  acquiesce  so  soon  as 

they  were  enabled  to  state  that  it  would  be 

accepted. — ^Thus  the  matter  stands  at  present, 

but  as  I  am  among  those  heretics  who  place 

no  manner  of  reliance  upon  politicians  &  their 

promises,  I  wait  to  see  the  commission  officially 

engrossed. — 

I  hope  you  will  agree  with  us  that  it  is  not  a 

thing  to  be  rejected,  especially  as  it  is  offered 

without  any  solicitation  on  your  part,  a  point 

which  I  shall  take  good  care  to  make  known. — 

It  is  certain  an  honorable  mark  of  confidence 

in  you  by  the  govenament,  and  they  can  have 

no  possible  design  beyond  that  of  manifesting 

to  the  world  the  high  regard  entertained  by 

your  Country  for  your  character. — I  do  not 

know  Mr.  M'^Lean  but  I  am  well  assured  that 

he  is  a  gentleman;  his  character  &  abilities 

are  certainly  of  the  first  rank:  it  is  not  his 

intention  (I  am  told)  to  carry  out  his  family. 

He  will  probably  embark  in  the  Constellation 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  31?!  1829 

from  Norfolk,   in  the  beginning  of  July. — 

Should  you  be  averse  to  the  restraint  which 

the  duties  of  the  ofi&ce  might  impose  upon  you, 

you  have  an  able  assistant  in  your  brother 

Peter,   so  that  in  truth  it  may  be  only  a 

nominal  affair.     But  after  all  there  will  be 

no  obligation  on  your  part  to  retain  the  office 

longer  than  a  year,  should  you  find   it    in 

any  manner  embarrassing  or  disagreeable.     In 

short  there  appears  to  me  every  reason  in 

favor  of  your  taking  the  appointment  and  I 

earnestly  hope  you  will  see  the  matter  in  the 

same  light  that  we  do. 

You  may  wonder  after  all  how  the  devil 

M^  Secretary  Van  Beuren  came  to  think  of 

the  thing,  although  in  fact  it  was  precisely 

what  he  ought  to  have  thought  of.    But  the 

idea  did  [not]  originate  in  the  capacious  mind 

of  the  Secretary;  it  came  from  our  jolly  f? 

Jack  Nicolson. — In  writing  a  familiar  epistle 

to  his  friend  the  high  funcionary  the  worthy 

little  fellow  suggested  that  your  appointment 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  311*  1829 

to  the  office  in  question  would  redound  to  the 
honor  &  glory  of  the  administration  &  his 
advice  was  acted  upon  forthwith. — 

Jack  is  as  usual,  the  very  glass  of  fashion, 
&  as  usual  believes  himself  to  stand  upon  the 
very  verge  of  matrimony,  and  although  it  is 
the  htmdred  &  ninety  ninth  time  that  he  has 
believed  himself  to  be  in  this  perilous  predica- 
ment I  do  believe  that  he  is  in  more  real 
danger  in  the  present  case,  than  in  all  his 
former  escapes  put  together. — The  Lady  has 
not  actually  yielded,  but  her  friends  &  advisers 
have  signified  intimations  of  a  very  alarming 
nature  &  I  think  the  little  man  will  be  fairly 
enlisted  for  the  rest  of  his  days  in  the  cares  of 
working  for  posterity. — The  Lady  is  in  every 
respect  a  suitable  match  &  has  moreover 
some  forty  or  fifty  thousand  dollars  in  the 
bargain. — 

Harry  Ogden  is  officiating  as  Cashier  to  the 

new  Collector  S  Swartwout;  but  he  tells  me 

that  he  intends  to  take  the  first  opportunity 


NEW  YORK,  MAY  311*  1829 

of  escaping  from  the  slavery  of  his  office  & 
return  to  his  old  station  at  the  Post  Office. — ■ 

Paulding  has  just  put  forth  a  new  work 
"Tales  of  the  old  Woman,  by  a  doubtful 
Gentleman."  It  ought  rather  to  have  been 
"Tales  by  an  old  Woman"  &c.  He  has  cer- 
tainly lost  the  art  of  writing;  he  seems  to  be 
troubled  with  a  sort  of  mental  dispepsia,  every 
thing  turns  acid  that  passes  through  his  mind 
— &  yet  Paulding  is  a  man  of  genius. 

I  take  it  for  granted  that  after  working  up 
your  Spanish  materials,  you  mean  to  rest  from 
your  labors. — I  hope  it  is  your  intention  to 
follow  the  track  of  American  discovery  & 
perform  for  Cortes  &c  what  you  have  done  for 
Columbus.  Having  done  so,  you  will  have 
an  unquestioned  right  to  do  as  you  please  &  to 
write  when  you  please  in  which  case  I  should 
not  be  surprized  if  you  were  to  produce  a  work 
of  greater  merit  than  any  that  you  have 
written. — 

The  Papers  say  that  Beasley's  place  is  to 

NEW  YORK,  MAY  311*  1829 

be  given  to  a  M^  Winchester  of  Baltimore  & 
that  Frank  Ogden  will  certainly  get  the  Con- 
sulate at  Liverpool. — 

The  Ship  that  is  to  carry  out  M'  McLean 
(it  is  said)  will  carry  out  Mr  Rives  &  his 
family — to  France.  Mr  Rives  is  a  person- 
age rather  distingu6  in  the  circle  at  Washing- 
ton; he  is  a  very  sensible  little  man,  but  cannot 
speak  French. — Lee — that  scape  grace  for- 
merly of  our  acquaintance — ^is  to  be  the  Consul 
at  Algiers — It  must  be  confessed  that  his 
qualifications,  are  well  fitted  to  please  that 
kindred  potentate. — 

We — that  is  my  Wife  &  the  six  children  are 
quite  well. — ^We  intend  to  pass  the  season  at 
Northampton  in  Massachusetts  in  order  to  be 
near  the  two  boys,  who  are  placed  at  the 
Round  Hill  School.* 

I  am  happy  to  tell  you  that  my  troubles  in 
Montreal  Bank  Stock  &  sunken  lots  of  ground 
are  nearly  at  an  end — Shaving  sold  the  last, 

*  George  Bancroft  and  J.  G.  Cogswell  were  the  principals. 

NEW  YORK,  MAY  311*  1829 

and  being  about  to  sell  the  first  which  is  now 
at  par. — 

Ever  my  d'  Irving  Y^ 

H.  B.  J! 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  6*^  1829 
New  York,  November  6-  i82g. 


I  beg  to  make  you  acquainted  with  the 
bearer  M'  S  F  B  Morse,  a  gentleman  for 
whom  I  entertain  very  cordial  feelings  of 
regard. — He  is,  as  you  probably  know,  one  of 
our  best  painters  &  has  essentially  contributed 
both  by  the  aid  of  his  pencil  &  his  pen  to 
advance  the  state  of  the  arts  among  us. 

The  National  Academy  of  design  in  New 
York  is  an  institution  which  has  done  much 
good,  although  its  name  is  rather  pompous. 
M'  Morse  was  the  founder  of  it  &  continues 
to  be  its  president — ^he  has  for  several  years 
delivered  coiirses  of  lectures  to  a  large  class  of 
artists  &  students  on  the  theory  &  practice 
of  his  art,  which,  with  the  annual  exhibition  of 
works  by  native  artists  have  produced  highly 
beneficial  effects.  He  has  moreover  claims 
upon  my  kindness,  from  his  being  a  fellow 
member  of  a  little  club  of  intelligent  individu- 
als who  are  in  the  habit  of  meeting  at  each 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  6th  1829 

others  houses  for  social  &  conversational 
purposes.  His  design  in  revisiting  Europe  is 
to  pass  into  Italy  &  devote  a  twelvemonth  to 
the  study  &  imitation  of  the  best  Masters  & 
to  gather  new  materials  for  his  courses  of 
lectures. — He  expresses  a  strong  desire  to 
become  acquainted  with  you,  &  I  think  you 
will  find  him  to  be  an  amiable  and  intelligent 
man. — 

The  last  letter  that  I  received  from  you 
was  dated  Alhambra  May  23?.  Since  then 
I  have  heard  of  your  progresses  &  of  your 
safe  arrival  in  London.  By  the  reports  of 
persons  who  saw  you  in  Paris,  you  were 
looking  in  fine  health,  (&  one  Lady  writes) 
younger  than  you  did  when  she  last  saw  you  in 
New  York! — 

I  think  you  did  right  in  accepting  the  place 
offered  to  you  so  handsomely  by  the  Gov*  but 
it  grieves  me  to  think  that  by  doing  so,  your 
intention  of  coming  home  must  now  be  post- 
poned.    If  you  find  your  official  duties  irk- 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  6**}  1829 

some,  there  can  be  no  obligation  on  your  part 
to  continue  in  the  performance  of  them 
longer  than  a  twelvemonth,  and  if  you  really 
intend  to  cross  the  Atlantic,  I  hope  you  will 
see  fit  to  resign  after  that  period,  or  obtain 
leave  of  absence  for  an.  indefinite  period. — I 
am  very  anxious  to  hear  from  you  in  London 
&  to  learn  how  you  are  pleased. — Everybody 
here,  thinks  you  ought  to  have  been  the 

We  returned  to  the  City  about  a  month  ago, 
after  passing  the  summer  months  in  North- 
ampton &  Newport  rather  agreeably. 

M'  Tavish  was  here  lately,  to  send  his 
oldest  son  in  the  charge  of  Capt  Rogers,  to 
be  placed  at  some  great  Catholic  school 
near  Liverpool^ — All  the  members  of  our  old 
society,  including  Governor  Johnston,  dined 
together  at  Paulding's  and  drank  to  your 
health  and  prosperity. 

Poor   Paulding   was   detained   nearly   the 

whole  of  the  stmimer  at  Washington  to  give 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  6«}  1829 

testimony  in  the  case  of  a  Doctor  Watkins. 
He  would  have  resigned  his  office  if  he  cotdd 
haVe  afiforded  the  sacrifice. — Harry  Ogden  is 
still  in  the  Custom  House — Kemble  is  at 
Washington — Renwick  busy  in  the  election  of 
a  new  president  for  Columbia  College  in  the 
room  of  D'  Harris  recently  deceased. — I  wish 
he  could  be  the  man — but  Judge  W"  Duer, 
with  a  wife  &  ten  children  wants  the  place  & 
his  friends,  I  think,  will  have  influence  enough 
to  obtain  it.  The  only  competitor  at  present 
is  the  senior  Prof:  D^  M° Vicar,  who  I  believe 
is  willing  to  discharge  the  duties  of  both  offices 
without  any  augmentation  of  salary,  for  the 
good  of  the  Institution. 

Yoiu:  brother  Ebenezer  is  very  well.  He 
had  a  fall  from  his  Horse,  some  weeks  since 
which  might  have  been  a  very  serious  business 
— as  it  was,  he  escaped  with  some  contusions, 
but  no  material  injury. — 

Pray  give  me  some  news  of  the  literati  & 

what  they  are  doing  in  London.     I  am  anxious 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  6*^  1829 

to  see  Moore's  Life  of  Byron  &  I  hope  his 
memory  will  be  able  to  reproduce  all  that  was 
good  of  that  extraordinary  creature's  auto- 

ever  my  d^  I  devotedly  Y^ 

(I  inclose  an  Epistle  from  Capt  Jack.    His 
love  affair,  as  usual,  evaporated  in  smoke. — ) 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  23d  1830 

New  York,  March  23^-  1830. 

At  last  my  dear  Irving  1  have  made  up  my 
mind  to  revisit  Europe,  and  am  busily  engaged 
in  placing  my  affairs  upon  such  a  footing,  as 
may  enable  me  to  remain  abroad  for  two  three 
or  four  years ,  unless  I  find  things  there  very 
different  from  what  I  am  prepared  to  expect. 
Our  present  intention  is  to  take  our  departure 
in  the  Havre  packet  of  the  10-  May  &  pro- 
ceed directly  to  Paris. — 

My  children  are  now  sufficiently  advanced 

in  life  to  be  benefited  by  a  residence  in  Europe, 

&  we  ourselves,  have  not  yet  passed  that 

melancholy  crisis  of  existence  when  novelty 

ceases  to  be  enjoyment.    As  to  myself  I  might 

affect  to  believe  that  the  period  is  still  very 

distant,  but  I  am  unwilling  to  trust  to  such  a 

hazardous   delusion. — I   am   tired   with   the 

sameness  of  this  nutshell  circle  of  existence, 

&  unless  I  break  from  it  now,  I  shall  be  doomed 

to  walk  in  it  to  the  end  of  my  days. 

To  my  poor  Wife,  a  change  of  residence 

NEW  YORK,  MARCH  23d  1830 

cannot  fail"  to  be  attended  with  the  most 
desirable  consequences — ^besides  the  novelty 
of  seeing  Europe,  it  is  a  positive  blessing  to 
escape  from  the  thraldom  of  the  nursery  & 
kitchen  in  this  free  &  independent  City. — 
So  that  you  perceive  my  dear  Irving  that 
we  have  convinced  ourselves  by  a  very  im- 
partial course  of  reasoning  that  it  would  be 
folly  to  postpone  our  expedition  to  a  period 
when  we  shotdd  be  no  longer  capable  of 
enjoying  it. 

Our  first  object  will  be  to  place  the  children 
in  the  best  possible  manner. — The  boys  are 
now  past  the  age  of  ten  &  eleven  &  are 
pretty  well  advanced  in  latin  &c,  with  some 
knowledge  of  french. — ^As  you  are  no  doubt 
able  to  give  me  advice  on  this  subject,  I 
need  not  tell  you  [how]  glad  I  shall  be  to 
receive  it. — The  girls  are  all  younger — the 
eldest  about  nine,  &  so  downwards  to  the  age 
of  two  years. — 

I  cannot  tell  how  long  after  our  arrival, 

VOL.  II. 14.  209 

NEW  YORK,  MARCH  23d  1830 

it  may  be  in  my  power  to  have  the  gratifica- 
tion of  taking  you  and  your  brother  Peter 
by  the  hand — it  certainly  shall  not  be  long 
happen  what  may — 

Possibly  you  may  be  disposed  to  come  over 
to  Paris,  but  at  all  events  we  hope  to  be  in 
England  sometime  in  the  approaching  sum- 
mer.— My  mother  in  law  M"  Carson  is  to 
accompany  us,  and  I  am  under  a  promise  to 
take  her  to  visit  her  native  land  as  soon  as 
our  afifairs  will  permit.  She  has  brothers  re- 
siding in  London — the  elder  (?)  Mr.  Gilbert 
Neville  Neyle,  is  or  was  a  lawyer,  &  I  believe 
has  his  apartments  at  Lincoln's  inns.  He  was 
formerly  chairman  of  the  Stamp  Office. 

M"  C  has  not  seen  him  since  she  left  Eng- 
land, a  period  of  some  thirty  or  forty  years 

Before  we  take  our  departure  I  will  write 
to  you  again — Moore's  life  of  Byron  has  been 
published  about  a  week — it  is  very  much  liked 
&  promises  to  have  a  great  run. — 

NEW  YORK,  MARCH  23!  1830 

My  Wife  begs  to  present  her  regards  to 
you. —  ever  afF  Y^ 

H.  B.  J^ 

M*?  Brevoort  begs  me  to  thank  your 
brother  &  to  say  that  the  veil  is  all  that 
could  be  wished. 


PARIS,  JUNE  17th  1830 

Paris,  June  if-  i8jo. 


We  arrived  here  on  the  8-  &  both  our  voyage 
to  Havre  &  journey  here  were  performed  with- 
out a  single  disagreeable  incident.  I  have  been 
incessantly  employed  since  our  arrival  in  visit- 
ing &  examining  schools  &  until  yesterday  I 
could  find  none  that  pleased  me. — I  hope  in  a 
few  days  to  settle  the  children  &  afterwards  to 
be  more  at  leisure.  I  have  two  boys  of  my 
own,  and  a  third,  the  son  of  our  friend  James 
King — and  three  girls,  to  dispose  of. — The  mo- 
ment I  am  rid  of  my  cares  I  will  think  of  some 
plan  of  living — at  present  we  are  at  the  Hotel 
de  HoUande  Rue  de  la  Paix. — The  weather 
since  our  arrival  has  been  cold  &  wet — so  that 
the  firs'^  impression  of  things  in  this  noisy  capi- 
tal has  been  any  thing  but  pleasing  upon  M" 
B  and  her  Mother. — Would  that  you  &  Peter 
had  been  here  to  comfort  us ! — 

I  received  y^  letter  by  D^  de  Butts  &  he 
came  with  us  in  the  S  Boat  to  Rouen — since 


PARIS,  JUNE  17th  1830 

tiien  I  have  not  seen  or  heard  from  him.  The 
great  Christopher  Heye  is  here,  and  has  given 
me  very  agreeable  accounts  of  you.  Capt 
Jack  Nicolson  came  with  us — ^he  is  lo[d]ged  in 
the  Hotel  with  M^  Bremner  in  the  Rue  d' 
Artois  &  seems  to  have  entered  into  the  full 
enjoyment  of  all  the  good  things  of  Paris. 

Young  M^  Storrow  has  very  kindly  assisted 
me  in  finding  suitable  schools  for  the  children 
&  the  Ladies  of  his  family  seem  very  amiably 
disposed  to  those  of  mine. — 

I  wish  it  were  in  my  power,  to  set  forward 
within  the  hour  to  join  you  in  London.  Noth- 
ing cotdd  contribute  so  much  to  my  happiness 
as  the  pleastire  of  once  more  meeting  you — 
but  at  present  I  see  no  prospect  of  doing  so. 
Possibly  you  may  be  at  liberty  to  visit  Paris 
shortly. — ^Pray  write  to  me  at  your  leisure. 
My  kindest  regards  to  Peter.  I  am 
My  dear  I 
ever  AS.r  Y? 

H.  Brevoort,  J' 


PARIS,  JUNE  17th  1830 

Pray  address  to  Mess"  Willis  &  C? — I  wrote 
a  line  to  you  on  Monday,  but  it  seems  that 
is  was  not  in  time  for  the  B[ritish]  Amb: 
[assador's]  dispatches. 


PARIS,  JULY  8*  1830 

Paris,  July  8-  1830. 


We  are  now  comfortably  settled  in  the 
lodgings  N?  14  Boulevard  Montmartre, 
lately  occupied  by  M^  &  M"?  Codman. — 
They  are  small  but  M"  Brevoort  thinks  she 
can  give  you  very  humble  accommodation  & 
desires  that  you  will  upon  your  arrival,  take  a 
look  at  a  Httle  bit  of  an  apartment  that  she 
has  at  y^  disposal. — ^We  have  an  indifferent 
cook  &  content  ourselves  with  ordinary  fare; 
and  the  entire  seclusion  in  which  we  live,  will 
exactly  suit  your  views  of  retirement. — Pray 
let  me  know  as  early  as  possible  when  you* 
may  expect  you  to  arrive  here. 

M"  Carson  is  disposed  to  postpone  her 
visit  to  England  until  the  Autumn,  and  M" 
B  is  unwilling  to  leave  heref  in  Paris 
alone.  I  am  therefore  not  disposed  to  let  the 
season  pass  away  without  stirring  about  a 
little. — It  would  exactly  suit  me  to  make  an 

*  This,  of  course,  should  be  "we."  iHer. 


PARIS,  JULY  8th  1830 

excursion  to  Switz"?  &  the  Rhine  &  return  to 
Paris  through  the  Neitherlands,*  stopping 
only  to  see  a  few  principal  objects,  so  as  to 
perform  the  tour  within  the  period  of  six 
weeks. — Of  course  I  am  resolved  to  stay  here, 
rather  than  travel  alone.  Might  not  this 
scheme  prove  agreeable  to  you,  and  if  so,  it 
would  give  me  the  greatest  happiness  to  pass 
so  much  of  our  time  together. 

The  boys  &  two  of  the  girls  are  now  at 
school. — We  have  left  at  home  two  little 
girls  of  2  &  4  years  old. — I  see  that  time 
will  be  required  before  we  can  become  recon- 
ciled to  our  new  mode  of  life  and  forget  what 
we  have  left  at  home. 

I  regret  that  the  life  you  been  obliged  to 
adopt,  proves  at  variance  with  your  taste  & 
inclination.  I  was  afraid  that  ofHcial  non- 
sense &  stupidity  would  disgust  you,  but  the 
time  cannot  be  distant  when  you  will  be  free. 
By  this  time,  it  must  be  pretty  well  ascer- 



PARIS,  JULY  8*  1830 

tained  that  our  commercial  relations  with 
England  cannot  be  put  upon  the  footing  we 
desire — ^and  your  most  excellent  chief  will  be 
glad  to  be  released  from  a  station,  which  on 
many  accounts,  must  have  proved  very  com- 
fortless and  perplexing. — But  when  we  meet, 
these  things  can  all  be  talked  over  at  our 
leisure  and  we  may  be  permitted  to  indulge 
ourselves  in  speculating  upon  the  future,  by 
building  a  snug  castle  in  some  retired  part 
of  the  good  State  of  New  York,  where  we 
may  glide  quietly  down  the  stream  of  life 
together,  sheltered  from  all  annoyances. — ■ 
In  these  visions,  your  brother  Peter  is  of 
course  entitled  to  a  full  participation. 

I  am  not  at  all  surprised  at  his  preference  to 
France.  The  formality  &  sulkiness  of  John 
Bull  in  the  midst  of  his  cloudy  capital,  must 
present  a  sad  contrast  to  the  sans  soucie* 
habits  &  enjoyments  of  France. — I  saw  M- 
Goodhue  yesterday  for  a  few  moments;  he 



PARIS,  JULY  8!h  1830 

gave  me  good  accounts  of  you. — Jack  Nicol- 
son  is  at  lodgings  in  the  same  House  with  M- 
Bremner  No.  10  rue  d'  Artois — he  has  ex- 
hausted nearly  all  the  sights  of  Paris  &  talks 
of  a  journey  to  Italy. — He  has  received  atten- 
tions from  some  of  the  magnates  here,  which 
has  proved  a  great  comfort  to  his  notions  of 
enjoyment.  As  he  cannot  speak  one  word 
of  French,  he  has  provided  himself  with  a 
manual  in  which  french  words  are  tortured 
into  english  sounds,  &  he  fancies  that  he  gets 
along  pretty  well. — The  weather  has  become 
more  settled,  it  does  not  now  rain  more  than 
twice  or  three  times  a  day,  which  must  be 
Paradise  compared  with  London.       / 

With  my  kindest  regards  to  your  brother 
I  am  my  dear  Irving  most  affect  Y? 

Henry  Brevoort  J^ 


PARIS,  SEPTEMBER  25!h  1830 

Paris,  September  25-  1830. 
N°-  14  Boulevard  Montmartre. 


M"  Carson  is  very  much  troubled  in  not 

being  able  to  obtain  satisfactory  information 

of  her   brother   W-  Gilbert   N  Neyle.— The 

answer  to  the  letter  which  you  were  the  bearer 

of,  merely  states  that  he  was  absent  from 

London  on  account  of  ill  health,  but  says 

nothing  further. — Now  if  you  can  spare  the 

time,  I  beg  you  will  call  at  his  residence  N? 

35  Upper  Harley  Street,  and  let  him  know 

that  his  sister  has  addressed  two  letters  to 

him  since  her  arrival  in  Paris  &  is  desirous  of 

knowing  whether  they  have  been  received; 

but  should  he  not  have  returned,  I  wish  you 

would    devise    some   means    of   ascertaining 

where  he  is  &  how  a  letter  should  be  addressed 

to  reach  him.     It  will  not  I  think,  be  difficult 

to  find  some  person  of  his  acquaintance  in 

London  as  he  must  be  well  known. — He  has 

held  the  place  of  Chairman  of  the  Stamp  Office 


PARIS,  SEPTEMBER  25th  1830 

&  until  within  the  last  two  or  three  years,  has 
constantly  resided  at  his  own  apartments 
N?  II  New  Buildings  Lincoln's  Inn. — He 
must  therefore  be  known  to  many  persons 
of  the  profession,  especially  as  he  has  been 
extensively  engaged  as  a  conveyancer  for 
nearly  forty  years  past. — 

If  your  engagements  will  not  permit  you  to 
make  these  inquiries,  pray  employ  someone  to 
exert  his  best  endeavours  to  do  so. 

Your  brother  has  not  yet  arrived. — Mr. 
Storrow  thinks  he  is  at  Havre. 

We  have  seen  Mr  &  M''^  M?  L  &  would 
have  been  glad  to  have  seen  more  of  them, 
but  they  have  been  so  fully  occupied  in  going 
the  rounds,  that  it  has  only  been  possible  to 
get  a  glance  at  them. — 

Political  affairs  here  seem  by  no  means 
settled,  a  change  of  the  Ministry  is  on  the 
eve  of  taking  place — and  the  people  seem 
resolved  upon  obtaining  some  direct  &  im- 
mediate benefit  from  their  revolution — thus 

PARIS,  SEPTEMBER  25th  1830 

far,  they  have  been  rather  depressed  by  it. — 
I  fear  the  pubUc  men  are  by  no  means  equal 
to  discharge  the  duties  that  have  devolved 
upon  them  &  that  many  changes  must  take 
place  before  affairs  may  assume  an  air  of 
tranquillity. — 

We  all  desire  to  be  remembered  to  you  and 

My  d-  Irving 

ever  Y? 
H.  Brevoort  J^ 


PARIS,  JANUARY  4^  1831 

Paris,  January  4-  183 1. 


There  is  an  American  lady  here,  a  M" 
Brooks  from  the  island  of  Cuba  with  an  Epic 
poem  and  a  letter  of  introduction  to  you  from 
M'  George  Barclay. — She  has  set  her  heart 
upon  submitting  her  cantos  to  your  inspection 
and  it  was  her  intention  to  present  them  in 
person,  but  having  changed  her  purpose  of 
crossing  the  Channel  in  the  winter  season,  her 
brother  M-  Gowan  is  to  take  them  in  charge 
to  be  delivered  to  you.  I  was  induced  to  call 
upon  her  at  the  pressing  instance  of  M- 
Cooper,  who  seems  much  interested  in  pro- 
moting her  views,  and  finding  her  bent  upon 
appealing  to  your  judgment,  I  yielded  to  her 
urgent  request  to  write  you  a  line  in  behalf  of 
her  poem. — 

I  endeavoured  as  delicately  as  possible  to 
repress  her  hopes  of  immortality  &  told  her  that 
she  overrated  your  influence  with  the  pub- 
lishers who  were  generally  a  very  hard  hearted 
race  of  men,  but   all   to   no   purpose. — She 

PARIS,  JANUARY  4^  183 1 

declares  her  object  to  be  fame  rather  than 
lucre,  and  indulges  the  hope  that  you  may  find 
her  Epic  worthy  of  being  placed  in  the  hands 
of  some  eminent  bibliopole,  who  will  under- 
take to  usher  it  into  the  world  in  an  appro- 
priate manner. — 

Now  as  it  is  well  known  that  you  are  often 
called  upon  by  our  aspiring  countr3mien  to 
lend  them  your  aid  in  producing  their  tragedies 
upon  the  boards  of  old  Drury,  or  in  procuring 
for  them  the  honors  of  the  Royal  Society,  I 
cannot  doubt  your  willingness  in  promoting 
the  humble  designs  of  M"?  B,  or  rather 
Sylvia  Occidentalis  which  I  think  is  the  name 
she  assumes  in  the  title  page  of  her  Epic. — 

We  are  all  pretty  well,  anxiously  looking  for 

the  epoch  of  our  family  troubles  &  the  return 

of   spring — M"   Brevoort   desires  me  to  be 

kindly  remembered  &  little  Metie  begs  to 

wish  you  a  happy  New  Year. — M-   Beasley 

has  carried  away  your  brother  to  Havre  much 

to  our  regret. — I  dined  with  them  the  day 

previous  to  their  departure  and  was  glad  to 


PARIS,  JANUARY  4^  1831 

find  your  brother  in  good  spirits  &  much 
recovered  from  his  severe  attacks  of  headaches. 
I  have  very  little  Parisian  news  to  offer. 
Capt  Jack  had  the  honor  of  being  presented 
to  the  Royal  Family  on  New  Year's  day  in 
grand  costume ;  his  reception  was  very  gracious. 
— ^We  have  been  much  amused  with  the 
manner  in  which  Madame  Malibran  has  re- 
ceived her  husband  who  arrived  some  weeks 
since  from  New  York  full  of  loyal  affection  for 
his  cara  sposa. — It  seems  that  the  Lady  being 
otherwise  provided,  refused  to  admit  her  legal 
lord,  and  resolved  to  obtain  a  divorce  forth- 
with.— She  took  council  from  Alderman 
Rosevelt,  but  finding  him  unable  to  assist 
her  intentions,  she  placed  herself  under  the 
advice  &  protection  of  General  Lafayette, 
who  at  her  suggestion  carried  her  to  the  Hotel 
of  M-  Rives  in  the  hope  that  our  government 
had  entrusted  him  with  powers  to  redress  her 
grievance. — It  is  only  a  short  time  since  that 

she  could  be  persuaded  to  reappear  at  the 


PARIS.  JANUARY  4«1  1831 

Opera — ^but  still  persists  in  keeping  the 
Monsieur  at  arms  length  &  will  not  suffer  his 
approaches  under  any  pretext  whatever. — 

You  must  have  observed  the  unceremonious 
manner  in  which  the  Chamber  of  Deputies 
legislated  the  old  general  out  of  his  great 
office. — ^Although  he  seemed  to  yield  with  the 
best  possible  grace  in  laying  down  the  com- 
mand of  the  National  Guards,  it  is  certain 
that  his  pride  has  been  mortified  &  his  feel- 
ings deeply  wounded. — The  Citizen  King  at- 
tempted to  soothe  matters  by  offering  to  him 
the  title  of  honorary  Commander  in  Chief  of 
the  N  G  for  life,  to  which  the  veteran  "of 
the  two  hemispheres"  replied— "How  would 
your  Majesty  be  pleased  with  the  title  of 
honorary  King  of  the  French"— M'.^  G  W 
Lafayette  says  that  the  gratitude  of  America 
survived  fifty  years,  while  that  of  France 
became  extinct  in  five  months, 

I  have  not  heard  from  you  since  2?  of 
November — ^pray  write  &  tell  me  how  you 

VOL.  II. IS-  225 

PARIS,  JANUARY  4.^^  1831 

are.     Has  your  little  voltune  been  published — 

it  has  not  reached  Paris.    Ever  my  dear  Irving 

affectionately  Y? 

H.  B. 


PARIS,  MARCH  7th  1831 

Paris,  March  f-  1831. 


The  shattered  state  of  my  nerves  barely 
permits  my  hand  to  guide  the  pen,  or  I  woiild 
have  told  you  before  of  my  happy  deliverance 
from  the  misery  that  has  embittered  so  many 
of  the  best  years  of  my  existence. — The  cause 
is  completely  irradicated,  and  I  begin  to 
realize  the  belief  of  enjoying  a  total  exemp- 
tion from  suffering  for  the  remainder  of  life, 
but  it  requires  time  to  restore  my  system  to  a 
healthy  action.  My  recovery  has  been  a  good 
deal  retarded  by  the  necessity  of  undergoing 
a  second  operation  about  three  weeks  after 
the  principal  one. — I  can  now  walk  a  mile  or 
two  without  bearing  about  me  the  intolerable 
burthen  which  not  only  preyed  upon  my  spirits 
but  was  wearing  out  my  constitution.  When 
we  next  have  the  happiness  of  meeting  I  hope 
both  my  outward  &  my  inward  man  will 
exhibit  to  you  an  entire  renovation.     Thus 

far  for  myself — the  second  chapter  of  events 


PARIS,  MARCH  7«^  1831 

thank  God — ^has  not  been  less  fortunate.  I 
am  rejoiced  to  tell  you  that  my  wife  gave 
birth  to  a  fine  frenchman — about  two  weeks 
ago  &  is  now  nearly  recovered  from  her  pains 
&  penalties. 

I  hope  your  health  is  now  reistablished  & 
that  the  term  of  your  bondage  is  near  at  hand. 
Our  present  design  is  to  pass  the  summer  in 
Switzerland  leaving  Paris  early  in  July.  Why 
not  join  us?  I  do  not  believe  that  you  could 
dispose  of  two  months  more  agreeably. — 

The  state  of  public  affairs  is  so  lowering 
that  one  cannot  form  any  project  beyond  the 
autumn — ^by  that  time  I  think  the  crisis  will 
have  passed  &  we  may  be  enabled  to  look  a 
little  into  the  future. — I  am  resolved  to  see 
Italy  before  I  return  to  the  U  States,  but  I  fear 
my  wife  will  not  be  able  to  make  up  her  mind 
to  leave  the  elder  children  in  Paris  &  to  take 
them  with  us  would  be  highly  injurious.  I 
would  be  glad  to  send  them  into  Spain  for  six 
or  eight  months,  but  who  can  I  get  in  whom 


PARIS,  MARCH  7th  1831 

I  should  place  confidence  to  take  charge  of 
them. — ^Nicolson  must  have  arrived  in  London, 
and  the  opening  of  his  volume  will  supersede 
any  remarks  that  I  might  otherwise  make  on 
public  affairs. — Tell  him  that  I  received  his 
letter  from  Brussels  &  that  I  wish  him  all 
manner  of  enjoyment  during  his  sojourn  in 

My  mind  like  yours  is  engrossed  with  the 
great  events  now  in  progress  throughout 

No  reliance  can  be  placed  upon  the  present 
state  of  affairs  here. — The  Government  is  too 
feeble  to  stand  long  &  every  change  will  tend 
towards  anarchy. — The  higher  &  middle 
classes  of  frenchmen  are  too  vicious  to  appre- 
ciate the  blessings  of  a  free  Government. — The 
Stocks  have  had  a  terrible  fall  to-day  &  it  is 
beheved  that  the  fall  is  owing  to  some  news 
that  has  not  yet  been  suffered  to  transpire. 
The  commerce  &  the  industry  of  France  are 

almost  ruined  &  the  depressed  state  of  her 


PARIS,  MARCH  7*^  1831 

funds  shews  plainly  enough  that  those  who 

possess  the  wealth  of  the  nation  have  no 

confidence  in  the  existing  state   of  things. 

The  Gov*  will  not  be  able  to  make  a  loan,  nor 

to  even  negociate  the  bon[s]  royals  much  longer, 

unless  public  confidence  is  restored. — An  issue 

of  paper  money  is  far  from  being  an  improbable 

resort,  especially  in  case  of  war. — It  seems 

pretty   well    understood    that    the    Gov-    is 

resolved  to  put  down  any  fresh  disturbance 

in  Paris  by  force  of  the  bayonet  &  a  large 

body  of  troops  of  the  line  are  collected,  as  it 

is  believed,  for  that  purpose. — The  Poles  are 

fighting  gallantly,  but  I  fear  in  vain. — The 

Italian  insurrection  is  spreading  and  gaining 

force. — But  the  question  that  interests  me 

most  at  this  moment  is  the  fate  of  the  Reform 

bill, — If  it  passes  I  think  it  will  infuse  fresh 

blood  into  the  veins  of  old  England  &  have  a 

happy  influence  upon  the  affairs  of  the  whole 

world.     England  under  the  direction  of  her 

corrupt  oligarchy  has  been  the  great  disturber 


PARIS,  MARCH  7!}}  1831 

of  the  world  for  more  than  half  a  century. — But 
I  fear  the  Bill  will  not  be  carried.  In  that  case 
the  reformers  will  be  led  forward  by  the  61ite 
of  the  kingdom  &  revolution  must  follow.  The 
supporters  of  the  bill  labour  under  the  great 
difficulty  of  not  being  able  to  lay  before  the 
house  the  actual  state  of  the  case,  but  thus 
far  they  have  the  advantage  in  argument 
against  their  opponents.  None  of  the  speeches 
however  are  distinguished  by  an  extensive 
grasp  of  mind.  They  do  not  remind  one  of 
those  giants  of  old  Burke  Fox  Pitt,  &c.— I 
hope  Jeffrey  will  do  justice  to  the  high  charac- 
ter which  he  so  justly  in  my  opinion  merits. 
Mr.  Baring  (I  suppose)  cannot  get  his  peerage 
from  the  present  Ministry. — Pray  write  to 
me  on  the  subject — any  and  every  sort  of 
intelligence. — ^What  a  tower  of  strength  the 
Ministry  have  lost  in  Brougham. — 

I  am  a  lover  of  peace — and  my  prayer  is 
that    the    cause    of   national    freedom   may 

triumph  throughout  the  world. — The  impulse 


PARIS,  MARCH  7«}  1831 

that  has  been  given  to  it  by  the  late  events 
must  prevail. — 

You  have  done  enough  for  the  poem  &  I 
beg  you  will  give  yourself  no  further  trouble 
about  it,  or  its  author. — 

We  have  taken  lodgings  for  the  next  four 
months  at  62  Rue  du  Faubourg  S*  Honor^ — 
a  little  above  the  Hotel  of  the  British  Am- 
bassador, on  the  opposite  side  of  the  street. 
They  are  very  comfortable  &  we  shall  have 
plenty  of  room. — 

M'.'  B  &  M'.'  Carson  present  their  best  re- 
gards.— The  little  ones  bear  you  in  remem- 
brance.— They  all  chatter  french  with  more 
facility  than  I  do. — 

I  fear  my  hand  writing  will  puzzle  you. — 
ever  affect^  Y? 



PARIS,  JUNE  30«1  1 83 1 

Paris,  June  jd-  i8ji. 


I  returned  from  Italy  about  two  weeks 

since,  quite  reistablished  in  health  &  most 

happy  in  finding  my  wife  &  the  little  people 

well. — ^The  rapidity  of  my  journey,  extending 

to  Naples  &  Psestimi,  prevented   me   from 

having  much  commtmication  with  the  living. 

I  however  found  time  to  see  nearly  all  that 

remains  of  the  dead  and  to  fill  my  mind  with  a 

new  world  of  associations  for  future  reflexion. 

So  entirely  had  I  become  absorbed  by  lofty 

speculations  upon  the  olden  time  that  a  return 

to  the  common  realities  of  life  quite  disturbed 

my  sensibilities.     Ten  days  suffering  by  the 

Grippe  or  influenza  soon  made  me  sensible  of 

my  mortal  responsibilities  &  levelled  all  my 

grand  dreams  of  antiquity.  ■  Every  one  of  us 

in  turn  yielded  to  this  vile  distemper — ^with 

the  exception  of  M"  C,  who  is  still  severely 

indisposed,  we  are  all  getting  well. 

My  personal  adventures  in  Italy  possess  no 

PARIS,  JUNE  30th  1 83 1 

sort  of  interest. — I  met  with  some  of  the  Bull 
family  with  whom  I  associated  very  agreeably 
and  was  particularly  fortunate  in  being  pre- 
ceded everywhere  by  that  ready  reckoner  the 
Marchioness  of  Connyngham  who  established 
a  tariff  at  the  Inns  very  advantageous  to  my 
purse. — I  am  now  preparing  to  set  out  in 
quest  of  fresh  adventures  in  a  tour  through 
Switzerland  &  down  the  Rhine;  my  chief  ob- 
ject is  to  give  my  poor  wife  a  holiday  from 
domestic  cares. — ^We  shall  take  our  departure 
in  about  a  week,  leaving  M"  Carson  in  charge 
of  the  two  youngest  children  the  elder  ones 
being  all  at  school.  Upon  our  return,  about 
the  middle  of  September,  I  have  projected  a 
visit  of  a  month  to  England  with  M"  Bre- 
voort  &  1,1"  Carson,  after  which  we  will  sit 
down  quietly  for  the  winter  in  Paris. — I  have 
received  a  letter  from  our  friend  Jack  Nicolson 
recounting  his  exploits  in  the  United  Kingdom 
&    announcing    his    speedy    departure    for 

America.     The  little  man  appears  to  have 


PARIS,  JUNE  3o!h  1 83 1 

enjoyed  himself  to  the  very  extent  of  his 
faculties  &  returns  home  happy  in  having 
passed  his  year  abroad  amidst  such  stirring 

So  you  are  now  left  sole  guardian  of  our 
nation's  honor  and  welfare  near  his  gracious 
Majesty's  Court  of  S-  James!  I  imagine 
you  are  not  ambitious  of  being  burdened  with 
these  mighty  responsibilities  &  that  you  look 
forward  impatiently  for  the  time  when  you 
will  be  released  from  diplomatic  bondage. — 
Who  will  succeed  you? — 

I  hope  M-  M^Lane  will  accept  his  appoint- 
ment. His  wisdom  will  go  far  in  helping  to 
steer  the  vessel  of  state  in  a  safe  course. — 

Pray  write  me  a  line  &  let  me  know  whether 
your  brother  Peter  has  or  is  to  join  you. — 

All  is  quiet  in  Paris,  but  I  fear  war  with 
Russia  cannot  long  be  avoided.  M"  Bre- 
voort  &  M"  Carson  desire  to  be  remembered 
to  you  &  I  am  ever  most  afi^  Y? 

H.  B. 


PARIS,  JUNE  30^1  1 83 1 

Who  is  the  writer  of  the  article  in  the 
Quarterly  on  Moore's  Life  of  Byron,  Poor 
Byron.  ~  The  odour  of  his  deeds  in  Venice  is 
as  fresh  as  ever;  everyone  has  some  tale  to 
rehearse  disgraceful  to  his  name.  I  was  how- 
ever much  pleased  with  a  highly  characteristic 
trait  of  his  feeling  at  Ferrara  told  to  me  by 
an  eye  witness  who  accompanied  him  in  his 
first  visit  to  what  is  called  the  prison  of  Tasso. 
Upon  entering  this  damp  dungeon  he  gave  or- 
ders to  be  left  undisturbed  &  actually  passed 
an  hour  &  a  half  in  solitary  contemplation. — 

I  was  much  pleased  with  the  article  (yours 
I  presume)  on  Slidell's  book — It  was  well 
merited  &  cannot  fail  to  please  him. — 

I  forgot  to  tell  you  what  I  know  must 
interest  you,  that  our  fds  the  Douglas  are 
here,  committing  daily  atrocities  against  decor- 
um, with  the  most  entire  unconsciousness  of 
design.  We  keep  as  clear  of  them  as  possible. 
M-    C*  is    here,    the  Jupiter    Tonnansf   of 

*  James  Fenimore  Cooper.  t  ■Sic. 


PARIS,  JUNE  3o!h  1831 

his  little  circle  of  hearers  &  admirers.  His 
book  is  nearly  finished.  The  principal  scene 
of  action  is  laid  at  Venice  which  will  enable 
him  to  display  his  nautical  lore.  But  his 
main  object,  he  declares  to  be,  the  striking  a 
blow  at  the  aristocracy  of  England,  through 
that  of  Venice.  He  and  Paulding  will  never 
rest  until  they  have  laid  that  old  sinner  Eng- 
land upon  her  back,  exposed  to  the  derision 
of  the  whole  world.  It  is  an  enterprise 
worthy  of  Don  Quixotte. 


PARIS,  JULY  8th  1 83 1 

Paris,  July  8i  1831. 


I  wrote  to  you  a  few  days  since  by  the  Amb :' 
bag. — You  have  probably  heard  the  particu- 
lars of  the  Treaty  of  indemnity  signed  on'  the 
4*?^  with  the  F  Government,  but  as  W.  R* 
called  yesterday  and  communicated  the  prin- 
cipal points  contained  in  it,  I  think  you  will 
be  glad  to  receive  intelligence  from  official 

The  F  G  engages  to  pay  us  twenty  five 
millions  of  francs  as  a  compensation  in  full  for 
all  claims  arising  from  Sequestrations  Confisca- 
tions Captures  Burning  property  at  Sea  & 
Condemnations  in  Port.  Payment  is  to  be 
made  in  six  equal  annual  installments  bearing 
interest  at  the  rate  of  four  per  centtim  from 
the  date  of  the  ratification,  which  will,  with 
the  principal  augment  the  indemnity  to  about 
Twenty  eight  Millions  and  a  half. — Claims 
of  our  citizens  for  supplies   to  the   F  Gov* 

*  W.  C.  Rives,  the  American  Minister. 

PARIS,  JULY  8!h  1831 

at    S-    Domingo    are   not    included    in  this 

The  Treaty  prescribes  no  principle  of  dis- 
tribution amongst  the  claimants,  either  by  a 
pro  rata  payment  or  otherwise.  This  point 
was  designedly  left  open  in  order  that  our  Gov? 
might  be  enabled  to  distinguish  those  claims 
especially  entitled  to  a  full  liquidation  from 
those  of  a  less  meritorious  character.  But 
it  is  the  opinion  of  M-  R  grounded  upon 
doctmients  in  his  possession  &  unpublished 
despatches  to  our  Gov*  by  M-  Gallatin,  that 
the  sum  to  be  received  will  be  sufficient  to  pay 
every  bona  fide  claim  arising  from  the  causes 
before  enumerated. — It  -  fully  appears  from 
those  authorities  that  the  Antwerp,  Holland 
&  S-  Sebastian  claims,  including  those  for 
property  burnt  at  Sea  do  not  exceed  in  amotmt 
the  sum  of  Fourteen  Millions — &  that  the 
claims  for  condemnations  in  violation  of 
public  law  &  existing  treaties,  will  not  upon 

strict  investigation  be  found  to  exceed  Fifteen 


PARIS,  JULY  8th  1 83 1 

Millions. — Indeed  most  of  these  claims  have 
all  along  been  considered  hopeless,  as  a 
great  portion  of  them  are  well  known  to  be 
for  the  property  of  aliens  covered  by  Am: 
names  &  documents — ^but  it  has  been  the 
obvious  policy  of  our  Gov*  to  swell  the  total 
amount  to  as  large  a  nominal  sum  as  was 
possible. — 

The  Beaumarchais  claim  is  to  be  settled 
in  full  by  the  pajmient  of  one  &  a  half  Mil- 
lions of  f?  but  as  it  has  no  connexion  with 
the  other  claims  it  will  probably  be  liquidated 

The  F  Gov*  agree  to  relinquish  all  claims 
&  obligations  arising  from  their  construction 
of  the  8*  article  of  the  Louisiana  Treaty, 
upon  condition,  subject  to  the  will  of  con- 
gress, that  French  Wines  shall  be  admitted 
by  us  at  a  reduced  rate  of  duty  for  a  period 
of  ten  years. 

As  an  equivalent,  they  stipulate  for  the 

admission  of  our  long  staple  Cotton  at  a  rate 


PARIS,  JULY  8th  1 83 1 

of  duty  not  higher  than  that  now  imposed 
upon  the  short  staple  Cotton. 

Those  are  the  essential  points  embraced 
in  the  Treaty  &  it  can  hardly  be  doubted 
that  when  the  many  diflfictilties  standing  in 
the  way  are  known  &  understood  M^  R's 
services  will  justly  entitle  him  to  the  grati- 
tude of  his  cotmtry . — The  ability  with  which  he 
has  discharged  his  trust  may  be  estimated  by 
comparing  the  sum  to  be  obtained  with  that 
reported  by  the  Commission  of  the  Deputies 
which  was  only  ten  millions  of  fr? — ^A  very 
mistaken  idea  has  prevailed  in  the  U  States 
that  the  late  revolution  was  an  event  favour- 
able to  the  recovery  of  our  claims,  more 
especially  as  our  f^  Lafayette  might  have  it  in 
his  power  to  interpose  his  influence  in  obtain- 
ing their  adjustment  under  the  new  Gov* 
But  the  truth  is,  that  with  the  best  disposi- 
tions in  our  behalf  the  old  General  has  never 
had  any  real  influence  &  even  if  he  had 
possessed  it,  any  overtures  from  him  would 

VOL.  II. 16.  241 

PARIS,  JULY  8«^  1 83 1 

have  been  regarded  with  distrust  as  coming 
from  one  anxious  to  requite  obHgations  & 
predisposed  to  our  interests. — He  has  in  fact 
had  nothing  to  do  either  directly. or  indirectly 
in  the  settlement  of  our  differences. 

The  Mission  of  Mf.  R  has  been  one  of 
continued  vexation  &  anxiety,  and  has  given 
him  a  sufficient  taste  of  diplomacy  for  the 
remainder  of  his  life.  He  assures  me  that  al- 
though he  has  for  months  retired  in  despair, 
he  always  arose  with  fresh  hopes  of  success 
resolved  by  untiring  perseverance  to  accom- 
plish his  task. — He  had  nearly  brought  matters 
to  a  conclusion  under  the  old  Gov- —  This 
fact  has  been  a  prevailing  argument  in  his 
negociations  with  the  existing  Gov-,  but  he 
has  found  them  by  no  means  so  ready  to 
admit  the  injustice  of  the  acts  of  the  Imperial 
Spoiler,*  as  their  predecessors. — 

In  short  the  worthy  little  Minister  seems 
like  one  relieved  from  a  burthensome  disease — 

*  Napoleon  Bonaparte. 


PARIS,  JULY  8!!}  1831 

&  indeed  he  had  almost  worn  himself  into 
a  consumption  by  the  disappointments  the 
anxieties  &  the  vexations  that  beset  him  in 
his  negociations  with  this  crafty  Republican 
Monarchy. — 

He  intends  to  recreate  himself  by  a  visit 
to  England  &  anticipates  much  pleasure  in 
renewing  his  acquaintance  with  you,  which 
happened  some  sixteen  years  ago  whilst  we 
were  the  subjects  of  the  Dowager  Mad. 
Bradish. — 

We  are  busily  employed  in  preparations 
for  our  journey  to  Switzerland  &  intend  to  set 
out  for  Geneva  tomorrow  afternoon,  being  all 
recovered  from  the  influenza. — 

Renwick  has  written  to  you  about  the 
embryo  tome,  which  I  hope  you  will  be  able 
to  dispose  of  to  some  of  the  Bibliopoles  in 
London. — 

I  forgot  to  mention  upon  my  return  from 
Italy  that  I  have  convinced  myself  of  the 
originaUty  of  my  Madonna. — If  the  Madonna 


PARIS,  JULY  8^1  1 83 1 

del  Gran  duca  in  the  Pitti  Palace  is  by  the 
hand  of  Raphael  mine  is  most  assuredly, 
though  differing  in  composition,  of  the  same 
family,  &  fully  equal  to  it  in  every  point  of 
excellence. — I  wish  Newton  could  see  it. — ■ 
To  possess  a  fine  picture  by  Raphael  I  know 
is  reckoned  a  little  extravagant,  but  as  mine 
was  found  at  Angostura,  where  it  had  been 
known  time  out  of  mind  in  the  possession  of  a 
Spanish  family  of  rank  reduced  to  poverty 
by  the  revolution,  the  probabilities  in  favor 
of  its  originality  are  much  encreased.  All  the 
Connoisseurs  have  confinn[ed]  my  opinion. — 
By  the  by  I  gave  a  line  of  introduction  to 
a  very  agreeable  young  German  some  time 
ago,  which  he  will  present  to  you  within  ten 
days.  He  is  every  way  worthy  of  y^  ac- 
quaintance &  will  not  require  any  trouble- 
some civilities. 

M"   B  begs  her  remembrance  to  you  & 
y^  brother  &  I  am  ever  my  d^  I  Y^ 

H.  B. 


PARIS,  JULY  8th  1 83 1 

I  saw  Kenny's  exposition  in  the  Lit: 
Gazette;  it  deserves  to  be  printed  on  silk  & 
framed  as  a  phisyological  ctiriosity. 


PARIS,  MARCH  25th  1832 

Hotel  de  Hollande,  16  Rue  de  la  Paix. 
March  2f^  {1832). 


M"  Carson  leaves  us  tomorrow  malgr6 
the  cholera  on  a  visit  to  her  brother,  N°  35 
Upper  Harley  Street.  We  have  some  idea  of 
following  her  early  in  May  to  spend  a  month 
in  England. 

I  have  rec^  a  letter  from  Renwick  (feb 
18)  He  observes  that  he  had  paid  Col  A's* 
bill  of  exchange  for  the  postage  of  his  MS 
but  had  heard  nothing  further  of  his  offspring, 
I  suppose  it  arrived  at  Liverpool  during  Og- 
den's  absence.  He  fears  you  will  not  be  able 
to  find  a  publisher.  It  has  occurred  to  me 
that  a  reference  to  Capt  Edw:  Sabine  (the 
Sec:  of  the  Royal  Society)  might  be  of  use. 
He  is  a  particular  fd  of  the  Professor's  & 
entertains  a  very  high  idea  of  his  talents  & 
requirements.     But  I  fear  he  is  in  Ireland. — • 

Does   your  friend  M^  Rich  tindertake   to 

*  Col.  Thomas  Aspinwall. 


PARIS,  MARCH  25!^  1832 

purchase  books  at  the  London  pubHc  sales? 
If  so,  at  what  rate  of  commission — I  may  want 
a  couple  of  hundred  volumes,  not  rare  ones, 
and  I  am  unwilling  to  pay  the  book-selling 
prices.  Pray  mention  my  name  to  him  &  my 
project,  that  I  may  call  upon  him  if  I  go  to 
London. — 

I  saw  you  brother  yesterday. — ^We  are  as 
usual.  Monsieur  Fellenberg  writes  very  en- 
couragingly of  our  little  boys — they  have  he 
says,  conquered  the  elementary  difficulties 
of  the  german  language. — I  hope  to  see  them 
in  the  course  of  the  summer  &  unless  anything 
happens  to  change  my  mind,  I  will  leave  them 
in  Switzerland  for  three  years.  I  presvime 
that  you  are  still  with  M'  Van  Bviren.  His 
rejection  by  the  Senate  surprised  me.  It  was 
a  bold  party  step,  but  instead  of  crushing  him 
it  will  only  aid  &  advance  his  political  views 
after  the  existing  excitement  has  subsided. — 
The  grounds  of  accusation  assumed  by  his 

opponents    were   not    sustained,    nor  would 


PARIS,  MARCH  25*  1832 

they  have  been  brought  forward  against  any 
other  nomination.  I  am  no  party  man  & 
hate  the  savage  warfare  that  is  waged  by  our 
pohticians.  I  think  therefore  that  I  am  the 
better  able  to  judge  of  this  transaction  with 
impartiality.  Everyone  will  appreciate  the 
motives  which  led  to  his  rejection. 

I  hope  he  will  not  return  without  paying 
a  visit  to  the  faderland.  I  can  venture  to 
assure  him  that  he  will  be  highly  gratified. — 
Our  entertaining  charg6  at  the  Hague  told 
me  that  the  Minister  Verstolk  of  foreign 
affairs  enquired  particularly  about  M-  Van 
Buren's  dutch  name  &  claimed  him  as  a 
descendant.  It  seems  the  Minister  is  very 
proud  of  the  ancient  colony  of  New  Neither- 
lands. — 

I  saw  M'  Van  Buren's  son  several  times 
whils't  he  was  in  Paris. — He  went  to  Naples 
under  the  escort  of  your  admirer*  the  Red 
Rover,  who  has  gone  to  bother  Sir  W  Scott 

*  Miss  Douglass. 


PARIS,  MARCH  25th  1832 

with  her  homage.  I  do  not  think  M^  J  V  B* 
is  in  much  danger  of  being  devoured  by  that 
she  abomination. 

We  have  here  a  genuine  specimen  of  a 
character  only  produced  in  the  United  States. 
His  name  is  Carr  &  he  has  the  appointment 
of  Constd  from  the  U  S.  at  the  Court  of 
Monnaco.f  He  has  been  in  Paris  these  three 
months  spending  his  outfit  somewhat  like  a 
sailor  who  has  received  the  wages  of  a  long 
cruise. — I  would  not  be  in  the  least  svirprised 
if  he  were  to  find  his  way  into  S*  Pelag6. — He 
is  a  tall  gaunt  Randolph  looking  figure,  full 
of  strange  oaths  which  he  utters  lolling  upon 
two  or  three  chairs.  He  has  killed  two  or 
three  of  his  compatriots  in  duels  &  talks  with 
perfect  nonchalance  of  putting  a  man  to 
death.  I  have  only  seen  him  once  at  our 
neighbor  Mr.  Pringlis,  but  have  been  afraid 
of  making  his  acquaintance  lest  he  might  eat 
me. — I  never  saw  such  a  mixture  of  the  bar- 

*  John  Van  Buren.  t  Sict 


PARIS,  MARCH  25th  1832 

barian  &  fine  gentleman, — He  has  a  taste  for 
coins  medals  &  pictures  &  has  already  pur- 
chased a  collection. — He  has  caused  a  gold  & 
silver  medal  to  be  struck;  the  first  is  intended 
to  commemorate  his  marriage  &  upon  the  one 
side  himself  &  his  wife  are  represented  kneeling 
before  an  altar,  their  hands  united ;  the  motto 
happiness  &  fidelity — on  the  reverse,  is  a  sort 
of  monogram  formed  with  the  initial  letters  of 
their  names  by  which  it  is  to  be  understood 
that  a  P  has  been  turned  into  C.  The  silver 
medal  is  in  honor  of  the  birth  of  his  daughter. 
— Paris  he  assured  me  was,  to  a  man  who  has 
become  thoroughly  acquainted  with  it,  the 
seat  of  the  arts.  "Everything  Sir  may  be 
got  in  this  City  from  a  penny  whistle  to  a 
german  flute.  I  might  have  bought  two 
venuses  upon  copper  by  T^ytian  for  fourteen 
hundred  francs;  perhaps  they  were  copies, 
but  they  were  just  as  good  as  originals." — 
He  has  left  cards  for  many  of  the  distinguished 

Parisians,  with  his  name  &  functions  printed 


PARIS,  MARCH  25th  1832 

in  arabic  which  language  he  is  studying  for 
the  court  of  Monacco.  M"  C  is  a  very 
beautiful  woman  the  daughter  of  a  Judge 
Polk  of  Maryland. — She  eloped  with  the 
Consul  from  a  boarding  school  at  the  age  of 
thirteen,  carrying  under  her  arm  her  school- 
books. — ^They  give  soirees  &  are  in  the  most 
fashionable  society  that  masked  balls  can 
afford. — But  I  think  I  have  given  you  quite 
enough  of  him. 

M"  B  has  received  a  letter  from  a 
friend  in  New  York  giving  an  account  of  the 
sayings  &  doings  of  the  fashionable  world — 
a  grand  ball  had  just  been  given  by  some  dis- 
tinguished foreigners,  at  which  several  of  our 
leading  matrons  presided  under  the  style  of 
"Lady  patronesses." 

L3mch  has  succeeded  in  forming  a  very 
agreeable  musical  club,  but  as  he  limited 
the  number  of  subscribers  to  only  two  hun- 
dred,   it    is    thought    too    exclusive    &    the 

worthy    don    has    been    placarded    for    his 


PARIS,  MARCH  25"}  1832 

pains   in   getting    up  an  elegant  source   of 
amusement. — 

I  do  not  ask  when  you  have  appointed  to 
leave  England,  as  I  imagine  you  have  not  been 
able  to  fix  upon  the  exact  period. — M"  B 
desires  to  be  remembered  &  I  am  faithfully 

Y?  H.  B. 


FONTAINEBLEAU,  JULY  28*11  1832 
Fontainebleau,  July  zS'-i,  1832. 


Although  I  have  little  to  communicate,  I 
caimot  deny  myself  the  pleasure  of  writing 
and  rejoicing  with  you  upon  your  arrival,  and 
reception  in  the  land  of  our  nativity. — 

The  festival  was  a  glorious  burst  of  public 

freedom,  and  in  reading  an  account  of  it,  I 

fancied  myself  seated  at  the  table,  mingling 

with  our  loyal  friends  &  townsmen  in  cheering 

&  greeting  yotir  long  expected  return.    I  felt 

all  alive  to  the  delicacy  of  the  position  in 

which  their  kindness  had  placed  you,  and  I 

doubted  whether  your  nerves  would  carry 

you  through  a  public  speech,  upon  an  occasion 

so  trying — ^but  go  to,  you  are  an  orator,  & 

may  now  aspire  to  the  dignity  of  bourgo- 

master  in  Gotham! — No  doubt  you  would 

have  taken  the  will  for  the  deed,  to  escape  the 

pains  &  penalties  which  your  illustrious  doings 

had  imposed  upon  you;  but  your  misgivings 

of  my  gentle  public,  I  think,  fairly  merited 



this  infliction  of  a  triumph;  and  for  once 
in  your  life  I  was  not  sorry  to  find  you  com- 
pelled to  perform  a  part  so  repugnant  to  your 
natvire. — 

A  letter  from  your  brother  Peter  informs 
me  that  you  were  at  Washington,  and  that 
you  and  your  friend  Newton  had  projected  a 
grand  summer  tour.  Would  it  were  possible 
to  join  you! — I  should  propose  setting  off  from 
Montreal  in  a  bark  canoe,  and  a  dozen 
sturdy  Canadian  voyageurs,  up  the  Utawa  or 
Grand  River,  to  the  grand  portage,  by  Lakes 
Huron  &  Superior.  Thence  return  to  Macki- 
nak,  &  the  Mississippi,  by  Lake  Michigan; 
thence  down  to  the  mouth  of  the  Ohio,  &  up 
that  river  to  Pittsburg,  &  so  onward  to  Lake 
Erie,  and  Niagara — ^making  sundry  detours  in 
the  course  of  the  route.  At  Niagara  we  might 
rest  awhile,  &  then  take  a  fresh  departure. 
My  imagination  is  often  haunted  by  past 
scenes  of  wild  adventure,  and  lonely  grandeur, 

in   those   regions   of   future   empire;   and   I 



should  dearly  like  to  live  them  over  again 
with  you. — ^All  other  modes  of  travelling  are 
naught  to  that  of  the  bark  canoe;  it  unites 
every  variety  of  comfort  &  pleasure,  including 
the  peril  of  being  scalped  in  these  times  of 
Indian  warfare. — Instead  of  accomplishing 
this  high  enterprise,  I  shaU  even  be  satisfied, 
when  we  meet  again,  to  pilot  you  through  the 
horrors  of  HeU  Gate,  or  wander  with  you  and 
our  trusty  &  weU  beloved  cronies  Paulding 
Kemble,  &  the  Supercargo,  through  our  old 
highland  haunts,  frighting  the  stripling  trout, 
and  parodying  the  sports  of  the  gentle  Izaac. — 
But  to  descend  from  these  cloudcapt  visions, 
I  am  glad  to  hear  that  you  mean  to  travel. 
Jonathan  has  grown  up  a  stout  gentleman 
since  you  knew  him  in  the  days  of  yore,  and 
I  think  you  will  see  many  whimsical  features 
in  his  crude  character,  unknown  to  you  before. 
— Besides,  you  owe  yourself  a  long  holyday. — 
"And  further,  by  these,  my  son  be  ad- 
monished :  of  making  many  books  there  is  no 



end;  and  much  study  is  a  weariness  of  the 
flesh." — So  saith  the  Preacher,  and  I  say,  so 
be  it!— 

As  to  me  &  mine,  we  are  still  here,  &  are 
most  grateful  for  the  bounties  bestowed  upon 
us.  Amongst  these,  which  your  c61ibataires 
may  deem  questionable,  is  the  birth  of  a 
demoiselle — ^being  the  Eighth  &  positively 
the  last  performance.  The  number  eight  is 
fraught  with  good  omens,  an[d]  albeit  I  am 
no  prophet,  it  must  abide.  My  poor  wife 
was  never  so  well  before. — The  little  people 
are  all  quite  well,  and  are  beginning  to  fill 
up  a  fearful  space  in  our  retinue. 

Yotir  friend  little  Meta  is  at  hand,  teaching 

Constance  to  read,  with  an  air  of  raatronly 

importance.     She  has  a  vivid  recollection  of 

your  gallantries,  and  desires  me  to  say  to  M' 

Irving,  she  wishes  to  kiss  him,  and  to  shew 

him  her  great  doll  in  New  York. — This  prime 

pet  was  a  cadeau  from  her  friend  the  late  M' 

Jimmy  Thompson. — 



The  boys  are  working  hard  at  Hofwyl,  and 
M-  Fellenberg  speaks  very  encouragingly  of 
them;  &  particularly  so  of  James  King.  Our 
last  letters  left  them  full  of  the  gayest  antici- 
pations. They  were  to  set  off  upon  the  annual 
pedestrian  tour  through  Switz^  on  the  first 
of  August. — I  hope  to  visit  them  in  Sept' — 
and  if  they  satisfy  my  expectations,  I  think 
I  shall  leave  them  with  M^  F  until  the 
spring  of  1834. — They  will  then  have  been 
there  nearly  three  years,  and  will  I  trust  have 
acquired  habits  of  application  and  activity 
which  may  last  them  all  their  Hves. — "He  that 
hath  many  children,  giveth  pledges  to  the 
world  against  great  enterprises." — ^Although 
this  dictum  applieth  not  to  me,  I  am  wilUng 
to  avail  myself  of  it,  as  an  apology  for  hiding 
my  light.  I  have  however  worked  very  hard 
since  I  have  been  here,  and  I  have  filled  my 
mind  with  many  quaint  scraps  of  learning 
&  wisdom,  from  the  fine  old  library  in  the 
Chateau.     It  has  been  my  chief  resource  in 

VOL.  II. 17.  257 


this  quiet  retreat,  and  I  have  really  renewed, 
(I  might  say  acquired)  habits  of  application, 
which  make  me  regret  lost  time,  and  the 
briefness  of  life. — I  intend  to  carry  home  a 
substantial  addition  to  my  books,  which  I 
shall  have  the  means  of  collecting  th[r]ough- 
[ou]t  the  winter. — My  house  is  rather  too 
small  for  my  present  stock  of  books  and  child- 
ren, but  I  hope  to  be  able  to  build  another  one 
of  more  suitable  dimensions.  I  mention  these 
projects  to  you,  because  you  have  a  prescrip- 
tive right  of  fellowship  in  all  that  belongs  to 
me. — ^And  I  will  thank  you  to  point  out  to  me 
any  valuable  works  that  I  may  not  be  ac- 
quainted with. — ^Whilst  I  was  in  London  in 
May  (to  fetch  M''  Carson)  I  paid  a  visit  to 
your  friend  Rich,  and  shall  avail  myself  of  his 
services  in  purchasing  books. — It  is  my  fixed 
determination,  under  providence,  to  go  home 
in  May. — The  fear  that  I  may  not  have  the 
happiness  of  seeing  my  kind  old  parents  is 

a  constant  cloud  over  my  mind,  and  I  am 



always  regretting  the  unavoidable  necessity 
that  compelled  me  to  defer  my  departure 
until  the  next  spring. 

My  Sister  writes  me  that  you  had  glad- 
dened their  hearts  by  a  sociable  visit;  and 
your  brother  teUs  me  that  you  were  sur- 
prised to  find  him  so  Httle  altered  by  the 
weight  of  so  many  years. — I  beg  you  will 
give  me  an  account  of  them,  and  a  very 
particular  one. — 

We  dread  to  hear  the  next  accounts  from 
N  Y. — The  reappearance  of  the  Cholera  in 
Paris  &  London  is  ascribed  to  the  extreme  heat 
of  the  weather  &  to  eating  quantities  of  un- 
wholesome fruit. — ^What  then  may  we  not 
apprehend  of  N  Y — ^where  these  causes  of 
pestilence  exist  in  a  much  greater  degree. — 
The  Therm:  at  this  place  rose  to  90  &  remained 
so  for  several  days — but  we  have  had  few 
deaths.  I  think  we  owe  our  protection  to  the 
vast  forest  that  sturovmds  us. — ^Where  was 

Capt  Jack  when  you  arrived — By  this  time 



he  must  be  steering  his  gallant  frigate  for  the 

When  you  have  an  hours  leisure,  fail  not  to 
bestow  it  upon  me  &  follow  my  example  in 
saying  a  great  deal  of  yourself  &  your  affairs. 
You  know  how  deeply  I  feel  interested  in 
these  topics. — My  good  wife  desires  to  be 
most  cordially  rememb :  to  you  &  by  you,  and 
I  am 

ever  afifec'^  Y? 

H.  Brevoort. 


PARIS,  JANUARY  i8th  1833 

Paris,  January  18-  i8jj. 

The  latest  accounts  we  have  of  you  my  dear 

Irving  left  you  at  Washington,  from  whence 

you  were  expected  to  arrive  in  New  York 

about  Christmas. — I  congratulate  your  safe 

return  from  exploring  the  wild  regions  of  the 

far  West.    Did  you  shoot  a  Buffalo  or  capture 

a   wild    courser — Pike's   description    of   this 

glorious  sport  on  the  boundless  prairies  has 

left  indelible  impressions  upon  my  memory. 

America  in  every  aspect  is  now  sought  after 

with  eagerness  in  Europe  more  than  ever. 

Such  writers  as  Mother  TroUope  are  a  real 

benefit  to  us. — ^The  point  of  their  satire  gives 

their  works  a  circulation  amongst  readers  who 

would  never  else  have  been  tempted  to  bestow 

a  thought  upon  us,  whilst  the  truth  remains 

and  excites  an  interest  to  know  more. — If  I 

were  not  too  much  under  the  influence  of 

the  foul  fiend — too  insensible  to  publicity — & 

peradventure  too  conscious  that  I  could  not 

satisfy  my  own  taste,  I  might  be  tempted  by 


PARIS,  JANUARY  i8«J  1833 

the  present  curiosity  of  the  public  to  ransac[k] 
my  mind  for  adventures  &  scenes  in  America. 
I  have  read  Paulding's  "Westward  ho"  with 
delight.  It  is  the  best  of  his  works  &  not  in 
my  opinion  surpassed  by  that  of  any  other 
competitor  of  the  day.  The  work  would  have 
been  more  equal  if  Paulding  had  been  as  well 
acquainted  with  the  West  as  he  is  with  the 
ancient  dominion. — It  is  in  the  hands  of  a 
french  translator  &  will  soon  appear.  I  will 
send  out  a  copy  when  it  appears. — The  D's 
fireside  has  had  great  success  here. — Why  did 
he  not  sell  his  Copyright  in  England ;  or  is  he 
insensible  to  filthy  lucre. — 

Have  you  seen  Miss  Martineau's  Illus- 
trations of  Polit!  economy? — They  are  pro- 
ductions of  the  highest  merit  &  will  be 
universally  read  in  the  U  States. — The  last  one 
on  "French  wines  &  politics"  it  is  said  has 
enlightened  the  inhabitants  of  the  Tuileries  to 
such  a  degree  that  it  is  feared  by  DT  Bowring 

&  the  other  negociators  of  a  commercial  treaty 


PARIS,  JANUARY  i8«?  1833 

with  England,  their  labours  will  have  been  in 
vain. — 

I  perceive  that  you  dined  with  Hamilton  at 
Charleston.  How  is  it  possible  for  a  man  of 
honor  to  play  such  a  game  &  reconcile  it  to  his 
conscience?  I  should  not  be  amazed  to  see 
him  here,  if  he  has  the  luck  to  escape  from  his 
perilous  enterprise.  Our  last  accounts  from 
Charleston  are  to  the  20*  Dec^  The  presi- 
dent's weU  timed  and  triumphant  proclama- 
tion was  said  to  be  making  a  deep  impression. 
It  is  possible  the  minority  may  gain  the  ascend- 
ant, but  knowing  as  I  do  the  indomitable 
characters  of  the  leaders  &  their  unhallowed 
designs,  I  fear  they  will  not  capitulate  without 
bloodshed. — They  are  no  doubt  taxed  two  or 
three  hundred  thous^  dollars  per  annum  by 
the  unequal  operation  of  the  tariff;  this  is  the 
sttm  total  of  their  grievances — all  the  other 
alleged  causes  of  discontent  are  inventions  to 
stir  up  the  passions  of  the  people. — Their 

patriotism  must  be  strangely  diluted  to  mag- 


PARIS,  JANUARY  i8«!  1833 

nify  this  temporary  evil  into  pretext  for 
rebellion  &  separation. — How  much  more  did 
the  Yankees  suffer  during  the  embargo  &c, 
&c. — But  the  real  nature  of  their  disaffection 
lies  deeper  to  my  certain  knowledge.  They 
have  lost  the  field  of  ambition  at  Washington 
and  they  are  bent  upon  creating  one  of  their 
own.  The  productions  of  their  lands  are 
reduced  to  half  their  former  value  by  the 
competition  of  the  new  states.  The  subdivi- 
sion of  property  has  reduced  their  plantations 
within  paltry  limits.  They  fear  some  decisive 
step  will  be  taken  to  mitigate  the  condition  of 
Slavery. — But  above  all  they  hate  us  with  the 
rancour  of  Shylock  for  our  prosperity  &  impute 
our  gains  to  their  losses.  An  ignorant  popula- 
tion is  easily  inoculated  by  these  plausible 
wrongs  to  deeds  of  unlawfulness  and  vengeance 
&  I  fear  they  will  never  rest  until  the  union  is 
dissolved. — Let  them  do  it  by  fair  means  & 
not  by  violence  if  they  can.    How  many  states 

would  be  desirous  of  uniting  in  their  wretched 


PARIS,  JANUARY  i8«!  1833 

confederacy  remains  to  be  seen — not  less  than 
five  or  six  I  imagine. — They  will  be  our  Ireland 
without  the  shadow  of  the  wrongs  of  that  ill 
fated  cotintry  to  stimtdate  them  to  civil  war. — 
You  have  no  idea  of  the  exultation  of  the 
friends  of  strong  government  over  our  im- 
pending difficulties  on  this  side  of  the  Water. 
The  disgraceful  elopement  of  one  of  the  sisters 
of  our  family  they  say  casts  a  deep  stain  upon 
our  house.  The  Carlists  &c,  insist  upon  it 
that  nothing  but  a  legitimate  King  will  restore 
us  to  order  &  prosperity.  Johnny  Bull  is 
fuU  of  brotherly  sympathy;  he  beholds  new 
markets  for  his  wares.  The  cause  of  freedom 
is  belied  &  dishonored. — Perhaps  I  view  the 
evil  on  the  dark  side — I  shall  be  glad  to  have 
your  opinion  &  shall  rejoice  in  finding  myself 
naistaken. — 

I  intend  to  return  to  New  York  in  April  or 
May  if  I  can.  My  wife  will  remain  another 
year  &  then  bring  back  the  children.  At  present 

we  are  all  well  &  getting  on  very  agreeably. 


PARIS,  JANUARY  iS^Jl  1833 

M"  Carson  is  in  a  state  of  great  agitation 
on  ace*  of  her  son  who  is  an  aid  de  camp  to 
Hamilton  &  a  furious  nuUifier.  She  wishes  to 
return  home. 

Your  brother  Peter  is  very  well,  but  as 
usual  will  not  be  tempted  from  his  daily 
routine.  His  spirits  are  cheerful  &  I  see  him 
pretty  often,  we  are  near  neighbors. — This 
will  be  conveyed  to  you  by  Col:  Thorn  who 
goes  to  the  U  S  to  take  possession  of  his  late 
son's  fortune. — He  carries  with  him  sundry 
patent  machines  for  fattening  fowls  which 
ought  to  entitle  him  to  the  Civic  wreath  from 
our  worthy  corporation  of  Aldermen. — 

The  animal  is  confined  to  a  close  dungeon 
&  its  food  is  injected  by  a  sort  of  stomach 
pump  which  occasions  instant  S3mcope  from 
which  it  does  not  recover  for  many  hours. 
Thus  within  a  fortnight  it  becomes  as  cor- 
pulent &  fat  as  the  late  George  the  fourth  of 
exclusive  memory. 

The  Col's  family  remains  at  Florence  under 


PARIS,  JANUARY  i8«}  1833 

the  protection  of  the  Grand  duke. — The 
young  Marquis  Carlo  Torrigiania  goes  with 
the  Col.  He  is  a  nobleman  of  the*  one  of  the 
most  illustrious  houses  of  Tuscany  &  intends 
to  travel  through  the  U  S.  He  seems  a  very 
agreeable  person  &  I  recommend  him  to  your 
notice  but  do  not  give  him  a  Letter,  I  have 
given  him  an  Introduction  to  Renwick. — 
Old  John  Jacob  Astor  and  I  are  again  tmited 
in  the  bonds  of  intimacy.  The  old  Gent  finds 
me  vastly  entertaining,  if  one  may  judge  from 
the  frequency  of  his  visits. — 

Pray  remember  me  to  all  our  old  fds — 
including  your  brother  and  the  Geni — My 
wife  salutes  you. 

I  am  my  dear  Irving,  affect  Y? 

H.  Brevoort. 



NEW  YORK,  JUNE  27th  1834 

{New  York)  College  Green,  No.  3, 

Thursday  {June)  2f-,  {1834). 


By  the  latest  Paris  letters  (15  May)  our  fds 
the  Aspinwalls,  were  all  getting  well  &  pre- 
paring to  embark  by  one  of  the  next  packets 
from  Havre  to  N  Y. 

Ebenezer  told  me  yesterday  that  you  had 
not  received  any  letters  by  the  late  arrivals 
from  Peter; — ^you  are,  therefore  ignorant  of 
the  misfortunes  that  have  befallen  the  poor 
A's. — My  wife  writes  to  me.  (26  Apl) 
["]  M"  Cooper  came  to  announce  to  me 
the  death  of  M'^.'  A's  youngest  daughter, 
the  little  angelic  creature  of  Constance's 
age  whom  we  admired  so  much.  She  died 
of  scarlatine  &  the  eldest  is  now  very 

What  a  trial  for  the  poor  parents  just  on  the 

eve  of  departure,  for  they  had  ahnost  engaged 

to  go  out  with  DePeyster. — Cooper  is  really  a 

good  man.    He  has  been  their  consolation  & 


NEW  YORK,  JUNE  27*^  1834 

friend  &  talked  to  me  with  tears  in  his  eyes 
of  the  event."    . 

— May  5*?*  "I  have  been  the  more  uneasy 
from  the  distressing  state  of  poor  M"  A's 
family.  They  have  lost  both  their  youngest 
children  of  the  ages  of  Meta  &  Constance  with 
scarlatine.  The  eldest  &  second  are  not  yet 
declared  out  of  danger.  I  cannot  imagine 
a  more  trying  situation — M"?  A  and  the 
Colonel,  both  ill  in  bed.  They  have  two 
sisters  of  charity  to  nurse  the  children.  Their 
affairs  all  in  confusion  in  consequence  of  the 
projected  voyage  to  America.  M^  Irving 
has  been  several  times  to  see  me.  He  goes 
daily  to  assist  &  console  the  poor  Aspin- 

But  as  I  have  said  before — they  were  all 
convalescent  on  the  15  May — and  preparing 
to  leave  the  scene  of  the  afHiction. 

My  wife  and  our  little  people  were  all  pretty 

well.    I  wotild  have  written  to  you  before,  but 

I  took  it  for  granted  you  had  rec^  letters 


NEW  YORK,  JUNE  27^}  1834 

from  Peter.  His  attentions  to  the  poor 
A's  have  no  doubt  prevented  him  from  writ- 
ing to  you. — 

There  is  nothing  new  here.  M'  Sec^  Liv- 
ingston was  at  the  Red  R's  soiree  last  night. 
He  is  in  high  spirits  &  full  of  fun.  He 
hopes  to  embark  for  France  before  the  end 
of  the  next  month. — The  R  R  had  another 
lion  of  formidable  dimensions  at  her  gathering 
— M^  Trelawney — the  same  who  has  favoured 
the  world  with  his  veracious  adventures  under 
the  title  of  "The  Adv^  of  a  Younger  Son.  "— 
He  is  in  appearance  the  beau  ideal  of  his  fd 
Byrons  Corsair  &  looks  as  if  he  could  kill  & 
eat  a  man  for  breakfast. 

He  arrived  a  furious  radical  &  has  been 
greatly  refreshed  &  confirmed  by  his  travels 
in  the  Mississ:  Ohio  &  in  Virginia. — 

I  wish  he  would  do  violence  to  yotir  tender 
admirer  the  R  R — The  more  so,  be- 
cause by  my  being  begtiiled  to  her  gathering, 

I  am  now  in  for  a  christening  of  a  young 


NEW  YORK,  JUNE  27th  1834 


Munroe,  on  Saturday  night. — One  error  my 
dr  f^  begets  another. — I  went  to  meet  some 
Carolina  Ladies,  who  refused  to  go  without 
me. — 

Write  me  a  line,  if  you  can, 

ever  aflec'^  Y- 

H.  B. 

Towards  the  end  of  the  soir6e — one  of  my 
Carolina  fds,  a  shrewd  old  Widow  asked  me 
who  was  that  little  round  old  Gentleman,  so 
busily  employed  in  returning  the  heel  taps 
left  upon  the  side-board  into  the  decanters? 
Who  should  it  be  or  could  it  be,  but  mine 
honest  crabbed  f4  Billy  Procter.  His  heart 
smote  him  at  beholding  the  waste  &  riot  of  his 
dear  adopted. — 


NEW  YORK,  NOVEMBER  10*^  1840 

t ■ 

{New  York)  Monday,  Nov.  10'-  1840. 


M^  &  M'f  Rives  &  M^  Ligare  have 
promised  to  dine  with  us  on  Thursday  next 
at  half  past  4  O'clk,  and  I  need  not  say  how 
much  pleasure  it  will  give  us  to  have  you  with 
us.  As  a  further  inducement  I  promise  to 
give  you  some  good  music  in  the  evening. — ■ 
M'  Gary,  begs  me  to  add,  that  he  hopes  for 
the  pleasure  of  your  company  at  one  of  his 
S3anposiums  on  Satturday  next  at  }4  past 
4  O'clk.— 

Pray  let  me  know  your  will  &  pleasure.  I 
saw  M^  Astor  on  Saturday,  thinking  he  might 
know  when  you  would  be  in  Town.  He  says 
he  hopes  to  see  you  as  soon  as  possible,  but 
cannot  say  what  day  it  will  be. — 

I  remain  truly  Y- 

Henry  Brevoort,  J^ 


NEW  YORK,  JULY  iB  1841 
New  York,  June,  I  mean  July  i-  {1841]. 


I  came  down  the  River  this  morning  from 
Beverly  where  we  are  all  comfortably  nestled 
in  the  old  mansion  of  treason  &  have  been 
wishing  &  wishing  for  the  pleasure  of  seeing 
you. — I  promised  Gouv  Kemble,  to  write  to 
you,  &  to  unite  his  entreaties  with  mine  to 
induce  you  to  leave  your  cottage  &  come 
up  to  the  Highlands.  About  an  hour  ago  I 
chanced  to  see  our  friend  M'  West,  who  told 
me  that  he  intended  to  pass  the  4  July  with 

I  told  him  of  my  designs  upon  you  &  invited 
him  to  come  up  with  you.  The  easiest  route 
is  by  the  way  of  Cornwall  &  West  Point. 
From  the  latter  place  you  will  always  find  a 
good  Ferry  Boat,  to  take  you  over  to  Nelson's 
landing  which  is  one  &  a  half  miles  from 
Beverly — or  if  you  wish  it,  the  Boat  wiU  carry 
you  direct  to  the  Beverly  landing  within  a 
short  half  mile  of  us,  through  a  beautiful 

VOL.  n. — 18.  273 

NEW  YORK,  JULY  iL*  1841 

shady  walk.  Or  if  you  will  write  me  a  line 
P.  Office  Cold  Spring,  I  will  have  our  wagon  in 
waiting  for  you  at  Nelson's  landing. — 

Now  pray  write  to  me,  &  tell  me  when  we 
may  hope  to  see  you. — 

I  will  not  say  anything  to  excite  your  ex- 
pectations of  Beverly,  but  I  defy  the  S  [un?]  of 
New  York  to  rival  us  in  the  rising  of  the  Moon 
over  the  peak  of  the  Sugar  loaf.  Yesterday 
evening  we  enjoyed  this  delight  for  the  first 
time,  &  as  you  are  acquainted  with  the 
motions  of  her  Ladyship,  pray  come  whilst 
she  is  in  the  humour  of  making  her  appearance 
over  the  Sugar  loaf. — 

Y^  most  truly, 

H.  Brevoort,  J' 


BEVERLY,  AUGUST  30th  1841 

Beverly,  Aug.  jo-  1841. 



I  was  relieved  from  much  anxiety  by  hearing 
from  your  brother  when  I  was  last  in  town, 
that  you  were  nearly  recovered  from  your 
severe  indisposition,  which  however  I  was 
glad  to  learn  had  not  been  so  alarming  as  was 
publicly  reported.  It  is  not  improbable  that 
your  exposvue  to  a  burning  sun  in  riding  out- 
side all  the  way  from  Honesdale  to  Newburg 
may  have  stirred  up  the  bile  &  caused  a 
feverous  attack. 

You  will  find  enclosed  a  copy  of  verses 

addressed  to  you  by  one  of  your  admirers,  a 

theatrical    moon-struck    neighbor    of    mine, 

who  has  done  me  the  honor  of  making  me  the 

medium  of  transmitting  his  effusion  to  your 

hands.    He  certainly  has  some  claims  to  your 

notice,  which  you  will  readily  admit  after 

reading  the  quotation  which  follows,  from  his 

letter  to  me.     "Circumstances  which  have 

come  to  my  knowledge  have  induced  me  to 


BEVERLY,  AUGUST  30*!}  1841 

believe  that  you  are  upon  terms  of  intimacy 
with  that  beautiful  author  &  amiable  man,  the 
first  reading  of  whose  lovely  descriptions  of  sim- 
ple unhacknied  nature  &  home  nurtured  feel- 
ings thrilled  me  with  ineffable  delight,  &  every 
repetition  has  deepened  the  impression.  I 
wish  to  present  him  with  a  token  of  a  strangers 
esteem,  and  although  when  compared  with 
his  poetical  genius  it  is  but  a  mere  trifle,  I  feel 
assured  that  his  critical  acumen  will  be  tem- 
pered by  the  gentleness  of  his  disposition," 
— Think  of  that  Master  Brown  &  weep ! 

My  poor  dear  old  father,  as  you  know  is  now 
no  more,  and  although  his  departure  was  an 
event  long  expected,  I  cannot  express  to  you 
the  deep  and  solemn  impression  which  the 
dying  moments  of  the  good  old  man  has  left 
upon  my  heart. — 

The  long  gun,  to  which  I  think  you  have 
a  prescriptive  right  of  inheritance,  I  now  beg 
leave  to  offer  you  in  the  name  of  the  family, 

hoping  that  you  may  live  to  enjoy  its  posses- 

276  '  i 

BEVERLY,  AUGUST  30th  1841 

sion  as  long,  and  as  happily,  as  did  its  late 
worthy  owner. — 

My  Wife  &  the  girls  beg  me  to  offer  their 
kindest  remembrance  and  I  am  my  dear 

Y?  affectionately 

Henry  Brevoort. 



Presented  to  Washington  Irvin[g]  Es^- 
By  his  ardent,  though  humble  admirer 

J.  Mills  Brown. 


I  became  affected,  as  I  have  here  attempted 
to  describe,  while  hearing  a  celebrated  Vocalist 
rehearse  the  melody  of  "Erin,  a  smile  and  a 
tear  in  thine  eye  "  for  it  recall'd  to  my  feeHngs, 
the  beautiful  singleness  of  expression  with 
which  I  have  heard  that  Air  breath 'd  by  Hps 
that  are  now  motionless  and  cold: — two  days 
previous  to  this  I  had  received  intelligence  of 
the  mortal  dissolution  of  her,  who  was, — 
Miss  B — ^tt  of  Boston. 

"The  storm  that  racks  the  winters  sky, 
"No  more  disturbs  Thy  deep  repose, 
"Than  summer  evenings  latest  sigh, 

That  shuts  the  Rose. " 

Why  are  those  tones  so  touching,  and  so  chill? 

My  heart  deep  sighs;  and  through  my  eye-lids 




A  hallow'd  tenderness — and  mute — and  still 
As  dew-drops  from  the  mateless  King-Doves 
Slow  dripping  to  her  melancholy  murmuring. 

Benumbing     chillness    tingles    through    each 

Like  icy  shoots  that  crisp  the  placid  lake 
When  sighs  hoar  Winter  from  his  frozen  Peak, 
And  small  birds  twitter  in  the  lonely  brake 
Sad  song — ^And  eddies,  soft  and  dim,  the  snowy 

'Tis  Memorys  chords  swept  by  that  mournful 

Which  once  shed  perfume  o'er  my  slumb'ring 

A  melody  of  bHss! — almost  a  pain 
As  thy  pure  lips  their  rose-bud  folds  did  part 
To  breathe  sweet-briar  tones — and  thrill  without 


And  art  Thou  fled  sweet  Warbler  like  a  dream? 
Oh !  still  I  feel  thy  heart-distending  notes 
Influsing  gentleness — a  May-morn  gleam, 
Of  the  souls  brightness!  Now  thy  spirit  floats 
Heaven-wing'd,  and  hymning  thoughts  such  as 
thine  eyes  did  beam. 

Thy  voice  was  as  the  light  of  a  clear  Moon ! 
Beaming  a  mellow  radiant  tide,  that  fills 


And  doth  o'erflood  the  gazers  eyes — then  soon 
Ebbs  dim — again,  now  o'er  the  brink  it  wells, 
While  from  the  half -closed  lids,  heart-dews   do 
trickle  down. 

Well,  Thou  art  dead — No  more — 'Tis  better  so 

Than  to  outlive  the  bliss  of  warm  affection. 

Through  the  drear  sands  of  Life  deep-wading — 
slow — 

Drag  harsh  and  dull  those  wheels  which  once  did 

With  fiery  whirl ! — extatic  expectation ! 

Bounding    o'er    wild-flower    turf,    and    Fairy- 

Dashing  the  brilliant  diamonds  of  the  Sun 

From  dewy  sprays,  and  Eaglets  wings 
Scared  from  their  cloud-veil'd  nest   by  Fancys 
loftier  springs ! 

Who  breathes  long  pines  in  frame  and   soul. 

Each  ardent  hope;  for  Pride  and  Power  still 

The  bruised  Reed — and  had  it  blood — they'd 

make  it  bleed. 
The  sear'd  leaf  totters  'neath  the  rain's  cold 

Through  ruind  Halls  fierce  storms    relentless 

Proud  Genius,  pining,  flits  his  Meteor  eye. 
Want-palsied  Age  swings  on  its  rotten  Crutch, 


(The  slippery,  ice-form'd  Staff,  call'd — Charity) 
Which  thawing  neath  his  grasp,  he  sinks  Eter- 

Wither  that  reptile  heart — that  soul  of  clay, 
Benumb'd    and    vacant,    which    mere    Death 

Who'd  cringe,  and  sneak,  and  beg  from  day  to 

For  what?    To  stare  upon  his  Dungeon  walls; 
And  count  his  Bars,  as  on  each  shadow  crawls 
Along  the  slime.     No — ^A  Volcanic  Sea 
Bursts  the  proud  heart !    Its  smoking  fragments 

One  blaze  of  frantic  joy — for  it  is  Free  ! 
Tis  done. — Its  ashes  scatter  through  Infinity! 

But  Thou  dids't  leave  the  world  ere  tempest- 
A  sinking  sun-beam  sleeping  on  the  wave. 
To  Thee  bright  Hope  and  Love  and  Peace  were 

Thou  sweetest  Rain-bow  of  a  summers  eve 
Just  touching  Earth — Thou  gently  laid  thy  head — 
on  Heaven. 

J.  Mills  Brown  ''Birds  Nest"  near  Cold  Spring. 
Putnam  County,  N.  Y.    August,  30'^  1841. 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  18!^  1841 
Monday  morning,  Oct.  18-  {1841]. 


I  did.  not  know  that  you  were  in  the  City  on 

Saturday,  or  I  would  have  asked  you  to  call 

at  the  Surrogate's  Office  &  prove  my  father's 

signature  to  his  will ;  you  need  not  come  down 

on  purpose  to  do  so,  but  when  you  are  here, 

I  will  be  much  obliged  by  your  doing  the 

needful. — 

Y?  ever 

H.  Brevoort. 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28^^  1842 
New  York,  December  28-,  1842.. 


As  Carson  must  have  kept  you  au  courant 
with  our  affairs,  &  I  have  but  small  matters 
to  write  about,  I  hope  you  have  been  indulgent 
to  my  silence  ever  since  I  received  your 
delightful  letter  from  Paris,  in  which  you 
spoke  of  the  pleasure  of  receiving  our  dear 
boy  in  a  way  that  warmed  my  heart  with 
gratitude  &  affection.  Your  continued  kind- 
ness to  him  is  acknowledged  by  him,  in  every 
letter  to  us,  in  terms  dictated  by  a  grateful  & 
kindly  heart.  By  this  time  you  must  under- 
stand his  nature  &  character  as  well  as  we  do 
ourselves,  and  I  hope  love  him  as  we  love 
him. — He  always  writes  cheerfully  &  sensibly. 
His  last  letter  was  written  just  after  his  return 
from  the  South  &  in  high  spirits  with  [all] 
that  has  happened  &  all  that  he  has  seen.  He 
speaks  of  his  intention  of  returning  home  in  the 
spring,  &  of  deferring  his  visit  to  Italy  for  the 

present,  which  I  think  considerate  &  proper. 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28«!  1842 

To  travel  alone  is  but  a  triste  plaisir  in  any 
country. — Besides,  he  is  anxious  to  be  use- 
fully employed  in  some  steady  pursuit,  if  the 
times  prove  auspicious.  In  this  hope  he  may 
be  disappointed  for  awhile.  But  things  are 
not  at  their  worst.  We  have  awakened  from 
our  imaginary  prosperity,  and  gone  back  to 
1832,  if  not  later.  Our  experience  has  [been] 
dearly  bought,  but  it  will  prove  valuable. 
The  worse  part  of  the  evil  is,  that  the  Country 
is  overrun  with  knaves.  Confidence  amongst 
men  is  at  the  lowest  ebb — all  our  monied 
institutions  have  been  defrauded.  At  this 
moment  my  mind  is  suffering  from  anxiety  on 
account  of  our  old  &  respectable  N  Y  Life  & 
Trust  C^,  which  had,  as  I  though[t]  weathered 
the  storm  &  proved  itself  incorruptable.  Its 
secretary  in  whom  unlimited  confidence  was 
placed  was  dismissed  last  week,  having  been 
detected  in  gambling  with  lottery  tickets, 
wholesale.    Although  he  protested  to  us  that 

the  funds  of  the  Company  were  untouched  by 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28th  1842 

him,  I  fear  it  will  prove  otherwise,  to  what 
amount  no  one  can  tell  until  his  accounts  are 
gone  over. — This  must  be  a  work  of  time  & 
labor  &  we  have  employed  assistants  to  per- 
form it  thoroughly.  Meanwhile  the  dividend 
day  approaches  (10  January)  &  we  can  hardly 
get  at  the  true  state  of  affairs  so  soon ;  &  if  it 
is  not  declared,  our  credit  will  be  deeply 
aflEected.  My  own  stock  cost  me  ^23,000;  of 
which  a  large  part  must  be  sunk,  if  my  appre- 
hensions prove  true. 

In  this  way,  I  have  lost  since  the  great  fire — 
about  ^25,000,  besides  the  trouble  &  anxiety 
which  I  have  suffered  in  striving  to  diminish 
it,  &  disentangle  myself  from  cares  which  my 
mind  is  unfitted  for  &  which  I  heartily  detest. 
— These  investments  in  corporate  bodies, 
were  not  of  my  own  seeking;  they  were  made 
for  me  while  I  was  in  Europe.  Instead  of 
selling  out,  &  pocketing  the  loss,  I  have,  as 
the  world  has  done,  gone  on  hoping  for  better 

times,  until  half  is  lost.    Still  there  is  enough 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28th  1842 

left  in  lots,  which  although  now  unavailable, 

will  become  so,  if  I  can  manage  to  keep  them 

longer  in  my  possession. — I  am  detennined  for 

the  few  years  more  that  it  may  please  God  to 

spare  me,  to  cast  anchor  in  a  securer  haven  and 

ride  out  the  storm  in  peace  &  contentment. — 

Five  years  of  trouble  &  anxiety  is  a  horrible 

sacrifice,  but  yet  I  have  no  cause  to  complain; 

I  bear  the  weight  of  my  three  score  winters  & 

summers  lightly  &  bravely,  &  am  surrounded 

by  a  family  of  intelligence  &  love,  such  as 

falls  to  [the]  lot  of  few  men,  &  for  which  I  am 

heartily  grateful  to  God. — 

My  wife,  as  you  probably  know,  has  been 

obliged  to  keep  her  room  two  months  past. 

Her  health  is  feeble,  but  by  no  means  alarming 

&  I  hope  will  be  restored  by  regimen  &  quiet 

before  long.     I   think  her  complaint   arises 

from    instability    of   the   nervous    system — 

particularly  the  nerves  which  are  connected 

with  the  stomach. — She  desires  to  be  warmly 

remembered  to  you,  &  to  thank  you  for  your 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28«?  1842 

paternal  kindness  to  her  eldest  born. — Our 
old  friend  M^  Astor  has  been  confined  to  his 
room,  &  mostly  to  his  bed,  these  three  months 
past.  I  saw  him  yesterday.  He  was  lying  in 
his  bed,  in  his  parlor,  looking  feeble  &  emaci- 
ated, but  much  recovered.  His  appetite  re- 
mains healthy  &  his  mind  as  clear  &  as  much 
occupied  with  old  cares,  as  usual.  His  years 
are  bearing  him  downward,  &  probably  his 
next,  the  eightieth,  will  be  his  last.  He  asked, 
as  he  always  does,  about  you  with  the  liveliest 
interest  &  in  the  kindest  manner. — Cogswell  is 
his  prop  &  comfort.  He  devotes  himself  to 
him  in  a  manner  which  does  honor  to  his  heart, 
although  his  own  health  is  I  think  very  feeble. 
The  old  gentleman  often  engages  him  upon 
serious  topics,  &  seems  to  derive  hope  from 
C's  rational  and  pious  views  of  things  present 
&  to  come.  His  skepticism  &  shrewdness 
often  displays  itself,  &  some  times  puzzles  his 
friend  to  answer.  A  few  days  since,  in  speak- 
ing about  the  happiness  which  Christianity 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28*1;  1842 

promises  in  the  world  to  come,  he  remarked 
to  C,  that  it  always  appeared  singular  to 
his  mind  that  these  cheerful  &  confident 
anticipations  were  not  oftener  made  the 
subject  of  ordinary  conversations.  Men  were 
naturally  fond  of  dwelling  upon  things  which 
were  expected  to  give  them  pleasure,  yet  the 
change  which  promised  the  highest  state  of 
happiness  was  rarely  spoken  of  familiarly, 
until  it  was  close  at  hand. — 

C's  money  matters  with  him  are  now,  I 
hear,  on  a  liberal  &  sure  footing. — ^You  will 
feel  deeply  interested  in  the  horrible  drama  of 
your  friend  Slidell.  The  Court  of  Enquiry  has 
just  commenced  its  proceedings  &  I  have  a 
strong  belief  that  he  will  be  able  to  justify  his 
acts,  and  come  forth  clearly  &  honorably. 
I  am  told  that  he  is  well  prepared  with  testi- 
mony to  prove  his  imminent  danger  &  neces- 
sity for  acting  as  he  did. — Whichever  way 
the  issue  may  turn,  to  him  it  is  a  deplorable 



NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28th  1842 

Our  friend  Capt  Jack  is  in  command  of 
the  yard  at  Boston — as  usual,  he  has  fallen 
upon  his  feet.  He  is  liked  by  everyone,  has  a 
fine  house,  is  well  paid  &  perfectly  happy — ■ 
except  that  he  lost  a  quarter's  pay  by  the  late 
explosion  of  a  bank  at  Charlestown. — Kemble 
is  well,  &  the  foundry  is  much  recovered  in 
strength  by  a  pipe  contract  with  our  Corpora- 
tion— ^but  is  now  at  a  standstill  for  work. 
Paulding  resides  in  Hudson  Square,  hoping 
for  the  reelection  of  his  friend  &c. — My  neigh- 
bor March,  with  whom  Mr.  Grinnel  dined 
lately  to  meet  Webster,  is  trying  to  persuade 
him  (not  the  Sec^)  to  purchase  half  of  my 
garden  &  build  a  good  house  upon  it.  I  have 
not  seen  M^  G  on  the  subject,  but  I  should 
be  pleased  to  have  him  &  his  wife  so  near  us, 
not  to  speak  of  the  sale  of  the  ground,  which 
would  be  very  agreeable  too. — You  will  be 
pleased  to  hear  that  the  only  lawsuit  which  I 
have  ever  had,  &  it  was  not  of  my  seeking,  is 
ended. — My  nephew  gave  in  two  days  before 

VOL.  II. 19.  289 

NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28*^  1842 

the  day  of  trial,  finding  the  issue  desperate,  I 
suppose,  &  we  are  rid  of  him  after  a  worid 
of  trouble  in  gathering  testimony  &  not  a  little 
expense. — He  is  now  the  happy  owner  of  five 
lots  of  ground,  which  is  two  more  than  will 
come  to  the  portion  of  any  of  my  children, 
who  are  better  entitled  to  them. — He 
thought,  and  his  knavish  lawyers  encour- 
aged him  to  think,  that  our  fears  might  give 
way  to  his  hopes  of  extortion;  but  he  has 
the  piper  to  pay,  and  is  happy  to  dance  to 
the  old  tune. — I  suppose  Dickens  has  writ- 
ten to  you,  &  that  you  have  read  his  book. 
It  is  just  what  might  have  been  expected 
from  him;  but  the  good  people  here  abuse 
him  for  not  writing  what  he  neither  could 
nor  wou[l]d  write,  a  dull  sensible  descrip- 
tion of  these  United  States.  The  Negro  & 
spitting  chapters  were  put  in  for  balances  I 
imagine — ^but  some  of  the  others  are  admirable 
&  display  a  warm  &  sensitive  heart. — The  little 

woman  &  her  baby — the  reflections  upon  the 


NEW  YORK,  DECEMBER  28il!  1842 

poor  emigrants,  are  truly  admirable  &  charac- 

No  materials  for  your  projected  work  have 
appeared  here.  I  hope  you  have  fairly  sat 
down  to  it,  and  that  the  subject  recommends 
itself  to  you,  as  you  proceed. — I  will  not  my 
dear  Irving  say  half  I  feel  at  our  long  separa- 
tion. I  suppose  it  will  last  three  years. — Still, 
I  hope  there  will  be  enough  of  life  left  us  to 
enjoy  each  others  society  when  we  have  the 
happiness  to  meet  again. — 

I  shall  not  write  to  Carson  by  this  steamer, 

but  enclose  a  letter  from  his  sister  Laura. 

You  will  take  care  to  advise  with  him  about 

the  best  route  to   come  home — ^but  he  will 

have  time  enough  to  write  further   to  me 

about  it. — I  am  every  truly  Y? 

Henry  Brevoort. 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  18*^  1843 

New  York,  October  18-  1843. 
It  is  an  age  my  dear  Irving  since  I  have  been 
gratified  with  a  scrap  of  remembrance  from 
your  pen.  While  Carson  remained  with  you 
I  did  not  feel  the  want  of  it  so  painfully;  but 
now  that  he  is  away,  it  becomes  indispensable 
to  my  comfort,  and  I  entreat  you  to  restime 
our  ancient  interchange  of  thoughts  &  kindly 
feelings,  as  often  as  it  may  suit  your  conven- 
ience. Carson  wrote  us  by  the  last  steamer, 
that  he  was  awaiting  your  arrival  in  Paris, 
while,  from  another  source,  I  learnt  you  were 
safely  quartered  with  your  niece  at  Versailles, 
several  days  previous  to  the  date  of  his  letter. 
No  doubt  you  have  since  met  each  other,  & 
that  he  has  related  all  his  agreeable  adventures 
subsequent  to  his  departure  from  Madrid. 
We  are  very  anxious  to  see  him  among  us 
again;  no  doubt  much  improved  by  his  free 
intercourse  with  people  of  the  old  world,  & 
his  observation  of  the  remarkable  things  which 

he  has  seen.     He  assures  me  that  he  has 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  i8th  1843 

imbibed  a  little  brass,  which  is  a  material 
indispensable  to  his  success  in  this  country, 
where  impudence  is  at  a  high  premium. 

Your  being  able  to  sustain  the  fatigues  of  so 
rough  a  journey  induces  me  to  believe,  that 
your  health  &  strength  are  restored, — but  I 
would  rather  receive  a  confirmation  of  it  from 
yourself.  It  may  be  that  you  forced  yourself 
beyond  your  strength  to  obtain  the  advice  of 
Parisian  Physicians. — Having  just  got  back 
from  the  extreme  end  of  Long  Is*?,  where 
my  family  still  are,  &  have  been  since  the 
begiiming  of  July,  I  have  not  been  able  to  see 
any  of  your  connections,  except  y^  nephew 
Pierre. — I  have  called  yesterday  &  today  to 
see  Storrow  without  success,  but  I  shall  take 
care  to  find  him  in  the  course  of  the  week. — 

My  wife's  health,  which  has  long  been  very 

feeble,  is  now  restored  by  the  fine  climate  and 

sea  bathing  of  that  best  of  all  summer  retreats 

L  Is^;  and  my  brain  is  possessed  with   the 

project  of  securing  to  our  own  exclusive  enjoy- 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  18!^  1843 

ment  some  far  away  nook  there,  to  spend  our 
future  summers.^-My  dear  girls  have  a  true 
relish  for  country  life,  &  would  much  rather 
roam  over  the  green  fields  &  sea  shores  of  L  I 
than  mingle  with  the  harlequinade  of  Broad 
Way— a  taste  which  I  know  you  will  commend. 
Indeed,  no  one  has  better  reason  than  I  have, 
to  be  thankful  for  the  blessings  of  wife  and 
children  who  are  my  comfort  &  solace  through 
weal  &  woe. — 

My  own  time  for  the  last  two  years,  has 
been  much  occupied  with  the  division  &  settle- 
ment of  my  good  old  father's  property,  which 
is  now  nearly  completed — and  my  share  of  it  is 
now  more  welcome  than  I  ever  supposed  it 
w^  be,  owing  to  the  large  losses  which  I  have 
sustained  within  the  last  three  years  by  previ- 
ous investments  in  the  stocks  of  our  cheating 
monied  corporations.  I  hope  to  indemnify 
myself  for  the  future  by  this  dear  bought  ex- 
perience.    I  am  no  croaker,  but  it  grieves  me 

to  say,  my  dear  Irving,  that  this  our  native 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  iSill  1843 

land  is  degenerate  &  corrupt  to  the  very- 
core.  You  would  not  believe  the  symptoms  of 
rottenness  which  I  could  point  out  &  establish, 
but  which  are  now  apparent — ^political  moral 
&  social — ^nor  am  I  able  to  discover  any  hope 
of  amendment;  any  counteracting  principles 
to  arrest  the  downward  tendency  of  all  our 
'institutions.  It  is  true — ^you  have  lived  a  long 
while  amidst  these  calamities,  in  a  country 
which  seems  doomed  to  discord  &  unhap[p]i- 
ness,  and  perhaps  you  might  be  able  to  find 
consolation  by  a  comparison  which  I  am  not. 
— But  let  us  turn  from  this  subject  and  gossip 
a  little  about  domestic  affairs,  &  the  idle 
topics  of  the  day.  Old  M^  Astor  stills  holds 
out,  &  is  better,  body  &  mind,  than  he  was 
before  you  left  us.  An  ontoward  event  has 
just  happened  in  his  family,  which  has  stirred 
his  ire;  a  thing  which  always  does  him  good. 
Master  Sam  W—  has  married  Miss  Medora 
Grymes  and  settled  upon  her  his  house  in  Bond 

Street,  which  house  had  been  purchased,  & 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  i8^  1843 

previously  given  or  settled  upon  his  first  wife, 
but  by  our  laws,  became  his,  after  her  decease. 
— This  affair  sticks  deep  into  the  old  gentle- 
man's gizzard.  He  views  it  as  a  sort  of 
impeachment  of  his  accustomed  sagacity; 
a  sort  of  outwitting  &  overreaching  in  the 
art  Qf  bargaining.  Previous  to  the  marriage, 
he  sent  for  the  bold  Samuel, — ^not  to  remon- 
strate with  him  upon  the  step  he  was  about  to 
take,  but  to  warn  him,  that  unless  his  g  g* 
daughter  was  not  withdrawn  from  the  protec- 
tion which  he  had  provided  for  her,  &  placed 
in  the  hands  of  her  grandmother  M"  W, 
means  would  be  adopted  to  deprive  him  of  the 
property  which  he  had  accidentally  acquired. 
To  this,  Master  S  bowed  submission.  Wil- 
liam's family  have  taken  this  new  alliance 
in  great  dudgeon,  &  have  resolved  never  to 
hold  intercourse,  or  to  speak  to  their  much 
overrated  son  in  law. — Both  parties  came  in 
collision  a  few  days  since,  at  a  grand  f6te 

*  Great  granddaughter. 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  iS^h  1843 

champ^tre,  given  at  Highwood,  by  J  G  King, 
in  honor  of  his  son's  marriage — ^but  there  was 
no  recognition,  &  the  A's  left  the  field  very 
prematurely  to  the  victorious  Sam,  who,  with 
his  wife,  were  the  lions  of  the  day. — ^Another 
rencontre  took  place  upon  the  occasion  much 
more  amusing  &  characteristic.  M'  Delauny, 
who  had  been  jilted  by  Sam's  Medora,  ap- 
proached her  with  true  french  nonchalance — 
took  both  her  hands  &  congratulated  her  very 
warmly  upon  the  happy  event  (not  of  his  hav- 
ing been  jilted)  &  clapping  his  hands  upon 
Sam's  shoulder,  exclaimed  Eh  Men  mon  ami 
comment  ga  va?  The  Trousseau  which  he  had 
ordered  from  Paris  arrived  very  opportunely 
before  the  Marriage,  and  the  jilted  man 
wrote  a  polite  note  to  his  rival  offering  to  sell 
him  the  said  Trousseau,  which  was  accepted, 
&  the  bride  was  made  doubly  happy.  She 
is  said  to  be  a  very  inoffensive  good  little  girl 
malgr6    her   mother — ^possessing    very    little 

personal  attraction,  &  with  an  expression  &  air 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  iS!!?  1843 

far  from  comme  il  faut.  Sam,  albeit  not  one 
of  the  wisest  of  men,  has  probably  made  a  silly- 
match — but  the  resentment  of  the  A's,  is,  I 
think,  carried  beyond  all  just  bounds,  unless 
there  are  causes  for  it  unrevealed  to  this 
pigmy  world  of  ours. — 

Another  event  is  soon  to  happen  which  will 
set  the  aforesaid  world  agog  for  awhile.  Our 
opposite  neighbor  has  a  wife,  who  as  you  must 
have  heard  is — 0,  &  that  wife  is  blessed  with 
a  daughter,  who  is,  in  the  opinion  of  the  afore- 
said world  00.  Whether  they  are,  or  not 
guilty  of  the  crime  ascribed  to  them  they  are 
here  doomed  to  oblivion  &  repentance,  never 
to  reenter  the  bosom  of  Charley  King's  "good 
society."  Finding  themselves  much  genee 
by  this  proscription,  &  confiding  in  the 
liberality  of  the  old  world,  they  are  to  de- 
part on  the  I  November  for  Havre,  under 
the  protection  of  our  worthy  fd  Jimmy 
Furck,   &  to  pass  the  winter  in  Paris.     In 

the  Spring,  the  Chevalier  Binda  &  his  sig- 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  iS*!?  1843 

nora,  are  to  escort  them  to  Italy,  &  watch 
over  them. — 

It  is  a  matter  of  curious  speculation  to 
imagine  what  will  be  their  destiny  in  the  land 
of  Cavaliers  &  Priests.  They  will  have  plenty 
of  money,  and  will  no  doubt  be  disposed  to 
accommodate  themselves  to  the  state  of  things 
existing  there. — Meanwhile — I  hope  my  most 
worthy  &  much  abused  neighbor  &  old  friend, 
may  not  relent  in  his  purpose  of  giving 
these  babes  of  grace  an  unlimited  furlough. 
He  told  me  of  it  himself  &  I  gave  him  my 
hearty  consent. — His  brothers  had  done  the 
same. — Kemble  is  at  his  Foundry  which  is 
dividendless.  But  he  &  his  family  get  a  pretty 
living  out  of  it — so  we  the  stockholders,  ought 
to  be  grateful.  Paulding's  son  is  engaged  to 
the  pretty  Miss  Pierson.  He,  Paulding  is  wait- 
ing the  reelection  of  his  fd  of  Lindenwood;* 
but  from  present  indications,  the  tide  of 
public  opinion  is  adverse  to  his  hopes,  &  very 

*  Lindenwald,  the  home  near  Kinderhook  of  Martin  Van  Buren. 

NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  iS^jL  1843 

flattering  to  Clay,  especially  if  the  scheme 

of  nominating  Webster  as  V  P,  meets  with  his 

consent,  &  shall  be  adopted  in  convention. 

The  little  Sage  has  grown  very  old,  &  has 

become  as  bulbous  as  our  excellent  f?  Capt 

Jack,  who  (by  the  by)  is  as  usual  in  clover  at 

Boston,  in  command  of  the  Navy  Yard    at 

Charlestown.     Prescott's  new  book  is  soon  to 

be  out.    He  is  a  jewel  of  a  fellow,  &  y'  devoted 

admirer  &  friend.     I  shall  not  be  obtrusive 

about  y^  literary  pursuits.     Cogswell  is  now 

well  again.     Y'  favorite  Miss  Oxenham  is  on 

furlough  in  England.     M^  Sewal  flourishes, 

notwithstanding  D^  Williams  is  or  is  about 

to  be  married.     The  said  D-  told  me  a  good 

story  about  the  old  boy  which  I  am  afraid  I 

have  not  room  to  relate.     He  consulted  the 

D-  as  to  what   items  of  property  he  might 

conscientiously  conceal  from  assessment.    The 

D-  thought   the   Library  legacy  was   a   fair 

one  for  exemption — Oh!  said  Money-bags,  I 

had  tought  of  dat  &  so  he  continued  to  every 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  iSi^  1843 

proposition  of  the  Doctor's.  At  this  rate 
the  Legacy,  if  the  old  man  holds  out  long 
enough  will  turn  out  a  profitable  speculation ! — 

Y-  interposition  in  the  late  outbreak  of 
Madrid  has  added  immensely  to  your  diplo- 
matic fame  among  your  admiring  countrymen; 
besides  stirring  up  the  ambitions  of  becoming 
Ministers  among  y-  literary  contemporaries 
Bancroft  Sparks  Cooper  &c  who  are  all 
sighing  &  dying  for  the  honor  of  represent- 
ing the  pomp  &  dignity  of  our  republic  at 
the  several  Courts  of  Europe— /or  a  certain 
consideration. — 

West  is  well  &  pretty  well  employed.     He 

is,  as  we  all  know  a  capital  fellow — and  now 

that  I  am  familiar  with  all  his  oddities,  I  like 

him  better  than  ever.     Wier  [h]as  painted  a 

very  successful  picture  for  the  Capital.     It  is 

now  on  exhibition  &  both  in  design  &  execution 

is  better  than  anything  except  poor  Allston's, 

that  has  yet  been  painted  in  the  U  States. 

We  hope  a  career  will  open  itself  to  Carson, 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  i8^  1843 

as  an  architect  by  &  by.  Now,  unless  you 
have  the  best  of  excuses  pray  sit  down  &  write 
me  an  undiplomatic  epistle.  I  beg  to  be 
heartily  &  kindly  remembered  to  my  f^  M" 
S. — How  you  must  suffer  in  missing  the  I — s? 
They  too,  /  guess.  Macready  is  drawing 
great  houses  here.  Poor  Conti  is  [to]  give 
her  first  concert  tomorrow  evening. — Now  I 
don't  care  who  may  read  this — Do  you? 
Adieu  my  dear  f"? ! 

H.  B. 







Among  the  Brevoort  family  papers  are  a 
considerable  number  of  letters'  of  immediate 
interest  in  connection  with  ntimerous  phases 
of  the  Irving-Brevoort  correspondence.  With 
the  selection  that  has  been  made  from  these 
documents,  there  will  be  found  a  few  hitherto 
unpublished  letters  of  Irving,  from  sources 
other  than  Mr.  Kane's  collection. 

Even  before  he  had  attained  the  age  of 
manhood,  Henry  Brevoort  was  engaged  in 
occupations  far  removed  from  the  usual  life 
of  the  young  New  Yorker  of  his  day. 

We  recall  how  in  his  first  letters  to  Irving, 
from  Mackinac,  he  is  actively  engaged  in 
the  fur  trade;  and  we  find  him  in  the  missive 
to  his  parents  from  Marietta  in  1804  giving 
observations  of  his  tour  along  the  Ohio  River. 
A  letter  from  L'Herbette,  of  March,   1805, 

VOL.  II. 20.  305 


reveals  the  fact  that  Astor  made  over  a 
branch  of  his  fur  business  to  young  Brevoort; 
but  it  is  amusing  to  note  that  business  pros- 
pects did  not  seem  to  be  very  good  at  that 
time,  and  L'Herbette  (who  often  figures  in 
the  Irving-Brevoort  correspondence)  states 
that  had  Astor  supposed  the  fur  trade  would 
turn  out  so  poorly  "he  would  have  found  out 
some  other  employment  for  you  this  winter." 
However,  that  it  was  worth  while  for  Brevoort 
to  keep  up  his  connection  with  Astor  is  shown 
by  the  letter  from  Montreal,  in  May,  1811, 
wherein  Brevoort  discusses  various  business 
matters  with  "old  John  Jacob"  and  annexes 
the  table  of  the  harvest  of  skins  obtained 
from  Fond  du  Lac  during  the  years  1809- 
18 10.  Well  over  50,000  fur-bearing  creatures 
■ — beaver,  otter,  bear,  muskrat,  mink,  raccoon, 
and  others — ^gave  up  their  lives  in  those  two 
years;  thus  silently  and  unwittingly  doing 
their  share  in  increasing  one  of  the  historic 

fortunes  of  our  city.    Astor  was  already  a 



man  of  wealth,  and  in  the  next  letter  we  reach 

(this  time  from  Irving  to  Brevoort),  he  is 

amusingly  compared  to  Croesus.     It  is  also, 

presumably,  Astor  who  is  referred  to  in  the 

opening  lines  of  this  epistle  as  the  "Great 

Mandarian. "     We  see  Irving  at  work  among 

hardware   and   cutlery,   but   resolved   to   go 

back  to  his  pen,  and  expressing  a  preference, 

"by  all  the  martjo-s  of  Grubstreet, "  to  starve 

in   a   garret   rather   than   to   continue   long 

— ^whatsoever  the  pecuniary  benefit — ^in  the 

sordid  routine  of  business. 

Of  cotu"se,  in  Irving's  news  of  New  York 

friends,  the  Hoffmans  and  the  Renwicks  take 

first  place.    Although  Matilda  Hoffman  was 

no  longer  alive,  the  home  of  her  parents  was 

one  of  those  which  Irving  frequented  most; 

while  Mrs.  Renwick,  "the  Bonnie  Widow," 

was  then,  as  ever,  a  magnet  for  both  Irving 

and   Brevoort.      "The   Lads"    come   in   for 

comment;  while  James   Renwick,   later  the 

dignified  professorial  brother-in-law  of  Henry 



Brevoort,  here  appears  as  "the  agreeable  rat- 
tle. "  Many  young  girls  are  made  the  subject 
of  Irving's  lines ;  and  so,  too,  the  actor  Cooper, 
whona  Irving  calls  "old  Satan"  and  who  at 
this  time  was  paying  devoted  attention  to  the 
charming  Mary  Fairlie  whom  he  later  married. 
After  much  talk  of  the  theatre,  of  Cooke  and 
of  Cooper  in  the  parts  of  Othello  and  lago  and 
in  other  plays,  Irving  writes  of  his  satiety  with 
city  life,  dwelling  on  the  "worldly  thoughts 
and  cares"  that  have  rendered  him  weary  of 
company  "and  dissipation";  he  longs  to  be 
with  Brevoort  in  "the  silent  solitudes  of  our 
Savage  country,"  where  he  "could  sit  for 
hours  and  muse  deHciously  on  the  borders  of 
one  of  our  vast  lakes. ' '  Yet  it  is  worth  noting 
that  while  he  was  restless  and  discontented, 
he  did  not  for  a  moment  lapse  into  melancholy 
or  ill  humor,  but  remained  confident  that  he 
wovild  soon  turn  his  abilities  to  effect,  and 
compensate  for.  this  "transient  &  temporary 

prodigality  of  life  &  talent. " 

308  , 


A  few  weeks  later,  in  June,  1811,  Irving 
again  writes  to  Brevoort  in  much  the  same 
vein.  He  begins  merrily  enough  with  an 
account  of  their  friend  Gouvemeiu*  Kemble's 
"long  and  boisterous  voyage  in  an  old  leaky 
hulk  of  a  british  ship,"  and  with  somewhat 
racy  gossip  concerning  his  brother  Peter,  of 
whom  Irving  says  "He  is  a  'Dam  rascal'  and 
there's  an  end  of  it;"  but  soon  he  reverts  to 
the  topic  of  his  previous  letter  —  that  in- 
dolence of  mind  which  had  resulted  from  too 
much  social  pleasure — and  looks  forward  to 
"  rugged  toil,  fierce  disputation,  wrangling 
controversy" — anything  which  shall  again 
call  forth  his  mental  energies. 

The  next  letter  is  from  Brevoort  to  his  uncle, 
John  Whetten,  whom  he  confidentially  ad- 
vises to  refrain  from  becoming  a  stockholder 
in  Astor's  fur  company  until  business  pro- 
spects improve.  Here  a  reference  to  the 
seizure  by  the  English  of  a  ship  carrying  a 

cargo  of  peltries  brings  forward  those  acts 



of  maritime  aggression  that  were  to  culminate 
in  the  War  of  1812.  The  letter  concludes  with 
affectionate  messages  to  "the  good  old  people 
in  the  Bowery,"  the  "Bowery"  being  the 
name  given  to  the  Brevoort  homestead. 

All  the  manuscripts  that  have  appeared  in 
the  preceding  pages  of  these  volumes  are 
documents  hitherto  unpublished;  but  the 
next  letter  from  Walter  Scott  to  Brevoort  is 
one  that  has  already  found  its  way  into  print. 
A  document  of  historic  significance  in  our 
literature,  it  is  included  here  because  of  its 
emphatic  importance  in.  connection  with  the 
Irving-Brevoort  correspondence.  Scott  mis- 
spells Irving's  name,  using  indeed  the  form — 
Irvine — of  the  Scottish  forbears  of  the  Irving 
family  in  America.  Scott  requests  Brevoort 
to  send  him  further  writings  of  Irving's, 
fearing,  as  he  says,  that  he  may  chance  never 
to  hear  of  them  otherwise.  The  Knickerbocker's 
History  of  New  York,  which  so  amused  Walter 

Scott,  had,  of  course,  a  great  vogue  in  America, 



but  local  New  York  history  did  not  interest 
the  foreign  public  of  that  day,  and  it  was  not 
until  1 8 19,  the  date  of  the  publication  of  the 
Sketch  Book,  that  Irving's  fame  was  estab- 
lished abroad. 

Brevoort,  when  writing  to  Irving  on  June 
24th,  18 13,  enclosed  Scott's  letter  in  praise  of 
Knickerbocker's  History.  Irving  then  must 
have  forwarded  it  to  his  brother  Ebenezer,  in 
the  possession  of  whose  family  the  letter 
remained  vmtil  in  1833  Ebenezer's  son,  Pierre 
Paris  Irving,  returned  it  to  Brevoort  with  the 
message  that  shall  be  fotind  further  on  in 
these  pages.  This  Pierre  Irving  must  not 
be  confused  with  Washington's  other  nephew 
Pierre,  his  literary  executor  and  the  editor  of 
Irving's  Life  and  Letters.  Pierre  Paris,  how- 
ever, also  showed  the  literary  bent  charac- 
teristic of  so  many  of  the  Irvings,  and  as  a 
boy  of  eighteen  had  been  a  contributor  to  a 
literary   periodical    aptly    and    prophetically 

entitled  The  Fly,  its  life  terminating  after  the 



brief  period  of  five  issues.  Pierre  later  became 
a  clergyman ;  and  one  surmises  that  compunc- 
tions of  a  moral  nature  led  him,  after  for  ten 
years  retaining  Scott's  letter  rescued  from  his 
father's  garret,  ta  return  this  precious  docu- 
ment to  Henry  Brevoort. 

The  friendship  with  Walter  Scott  was  the 
notable  incident  of  Brevoort's  early  travels  in 
Europe,  but  certainly  Brevoort's  most  amus- 
ing hours  must  have  been  spent  in  the  perusal 
of  the  long  letters  sent  to  him  from  America 
by  his  little  sister  Margaret,  who  figures  so 
frequently  in  the  correspondence  with  Irving, 
and  who  was  later  to  become  the  wife  of 
Professor  James  Renwick.  From  some  of 
these  charming  letters  of  the  little  girl,  who 
regarded  her  oldest  brother  with  affection 
akin  to  adoration,  we  have  chosen  (with  the 
gracious  permission  of  Mrs.  Robert  Sedgwick) 
a  few  excerpts  of  the  years  1812  and  181 3. 
Quaint  little  nuggets  they  are !    In  the  first  is  a 

description  of  a  party  at  Ward's  Island,  where 



Irving  romped  with  the  children  and  teased 


"Now  my  dear  Brother  I  must  tell  you  of 

our  yesterdays  party,  at  wards  Island!  you 

will  laugh  and  shake  in  such  a  manner,  if  you 

can  make  out  to  understand  my  blundering 

description,  this  party,  you  must  know,  was 

given  by  old  judge  Benson,  he  particularly 

invited  a  number  of  ladies  and  Gentlemen, 

my  conseguencial  self  included,  to  tea  there,  of 

course   we   all   went   highly   delighted,    and 

determined,  to  enjoy  ourselves  as  much  as 

possible,  and  so  we  did,  Isabella  and  myself 

did  not  behave  exactly  as  the  rest  did,  for 

the  sage  Mr.  Irving  was  of  our  party,  and  we 

cosidered  otirselves  in  some  measure,  as  in 

the  presence  of  a  grand  Inquisitor,  you  know 

he  detests  all  kinds  of  romping,  as  well  as 

your  literary  self,    he  is  the  meekest  man,  I 

ever  knew,   he  is  the  very  counterpart   of 

Moses  himself— h&  thinks  no  more  of  himself, 

than  the  grand  sulton  of  the  East  thinks  of 



himself.  My  dear  Brother  I  am  only  in 

Later  we  find  an  amusing  portrait  of  old 
Henry  Brevoort,  with  his  passion  for  all  the 
animals  that  he  kept  in  his  "ark"  on  Broad- 
way; "quite  happy,  save  now  and  then  a 
cloud  of  care  passes  over  his  face  when  he 
thinks  of  the  fate  of  his  country. "  But  when 
the  American  navy  gives  a  good  account  of 
itself,  another  letter  of  Margaret's  shows  us 
how  jubilant  is  the  "venerable  father." 

"Behold  me  then  seated  at  my  bedroom 
window  in  the  second  story  of  the  ark,  with  a 
huge  earthen  inkstand  before  me,  and  two 
old  goose  quils,  I  am  determined  not  to  stop 
until  they  are  both  worn  out. 

"You  will  find  but  little  alteration  at  your 
return  he  stoops  a  little  more,  and  his  hair  is 
a  little  whiter,  his  nose  is  almost  well  and  he 
is  in  perfect  health,  and  quite  happy,  save 
now  and  then,  a  cloud  of  care  passes  over  his 

face,  when  he  thinks  of  the  fate  of  his  country ; 



he  says  things  don't  go  on  as  they  should 
something  is  wrong  at  the  head,  and  he  fears 
we  are  in  a  bad  way,  he  dont  understand  these 
new  fangled  doings,  our  government  is  made 
up  of  upstarts,  whose  heads  are  as  empty  as 
calabashes,  people  dont  do  as  they  used  to  in 
old  times  &c  &c  &c.  His  passion  for  birds 
is  as  great  as  ever,  he  has  had  very  bad  luck 
with   the  canaries,    our  yard   is  filled  with 

pidgeons,  ducks,  geese,  fowls,  goslings,  pea- 
cocks, pigs  &c  &c  &c. — 

"Mrs.  Renwick  sent  the  coach  out  for  me 
the  day  before  yesterday  to  come  in  to  a  little 
tea  drinking;  yesterday  afternoon  she  brought 
me  out  with  all  the  letters,  her  family,  the 
Rhinelanders  and  W  Irving  drank  tea  with  us, 
it  would  have  done  your  heart  good  to  see 
what  a  happy  set  we  were. — 

"We  have  got  a  charming  little  neighbour- 
hood there's  Mrs  Hoffman  behind  us  and 
Mrs  Talman  before  us  (she  has  moved  into 

Mr  Minthoms  new  home)  we  are  all  delighted 



with  each  other  Mrs  H  is  one  of  the  most 
charming  little  women  I  almost  ever  met  with, 
she  and  my  good  Mother  are  quite  chosen 
friends,  I  find  so  many  inducements  to  stay 
in  the  country  that  I  very  rarely  go  to  town, 
perhaps  you  will  scarcely  credit  me  when  I 
tell  you  I  had  not  been  there  in  a  month  before 
Mrs  R  sent  for  me;  so  you  see  I  have  grown 
quite  domestic  and  shall  want  no  jewels  to 
decorate  myself  with,  in  the  remainder  of  Mr 
Brevoorts  rural  shades. — 

"Dear  Mrs  Ren  wick,  what  shall  I  say  of  her? 

she  is  everything  that's  good  and  amiable, 

my  letters  are  never  half  read  or  enjoyed  until 

she  reads  them  with  me  she  almost  jtimps  for 

joy  whenever  we  get  one  from  you  &  really 

seems  to  feel  the  same  satisfaction  that  an 

affectionate  mother  would  who  was  blessed 

with  such  a  son;  When  Uncle  W  gets  one  he 

gives  some  part  of  it  to-  Mi^  Irving  from  him  it 

goes  to  Mrs  Renwick  from  her  to  me  and  then 



to  the  owner  mine  go  the  rounds  as  regularly. 
I  was  at  Mrs  R.  when  I  received  your  last  to 
Father  &  Mother,  I  absolutely  cotild  scarcely 
get  sight  of  it  there  was  such  fighting,  &, 
boxing,  (I  would  have  given  any  thing  had 
you  been  behind  the  curtain)  there  was  Mr 
Irving  flourishing  about  with  his  cane  banging 
Isabella  and  myself  as  if  we  had  been  two 
little  sticks  and  not  Miss  R  and  Miss  B 
while  we  are  fighting  who  shall  read  first 
Mrs  R  finds  some  snug  comer  where  she  sits 
and  reads  the  whole  letter. " 

"I  suppose  dame  fame  has  informed  you  of 
the  wondrous  achievements  of  our  infant 
and  galant  navy  as  its  called,  my  dear  Father 
is  quite  delighted,  he  hired  a  boat  the  other 
day  for  the  express  purpose  of  going  on  board 
the  Macidonian,  never  did  Alexander  retiirn 
more  triumphantly  from  his  conquests  than 
did  our  venerable  Father,  bearing  in  his  hand 

an  immense  piece  of  British  oak,  which  is 



exhibited  on  our  chimney  piece,  for  the  in- 
spection of  the  curious;  all  of  his  very  great 
friends  are  favored  with  small  splinters,  as  a 
mark  of  great  distinction. " 

From  still  another  letter  is  chosen  the 
passage  in  which  the  young  girl  writes  on  the 
evil  of  the  world,  and  observes  that  if  the  dis- 
turbers of  peace  were  as  anxious  to  do  good  as 
they  are  eager  to  torment  one  another,  "what 
a  very  happy  world  this  would  be. "  In  those 
days,  as  in  these,  the  censor  broke  in  upon  the 
privacy  of  correspondence;  but  Margaret  sees 
the  necessity  of  restraining  her  abuse  of 
President  Madison  and  the  rulers  of  England 
and  France  (whom  she  familiarly  calls  Jim, 
George,  and  Bony),  lest  her  letter  be  made 
the  subject  of  investigation  by  perhaps  the 
British  Parliament  itself. 

"I  am  almost  afraid  to  say  anything,  now 

that  I  have  began,  they  tell  me  it  is  more  thatl 



probable  that  my  letter  will  be  opened;  I 
heartily  wish,  all  the  disturbers  of  the  peace 
were  happily  lodged  in  that  precious  planet, 
(satum)  which  seems  to  be  now,  reigning  with 
peculiar  influence;  infusing  its  malignant  rays 
into  the  hearts  of  men;  inciting  them  to  such 
dreadful  cruelties,  that  it  makes  me  shudder 
even  to  hear  them;  their  minds  are  devoted 
to  the  study  of  tormenting  each  other,  and 
in  this  laudable  and  praiseworthy  pursuit 
they  are  most  indefatigable;  (If  they  were  as 
anxious  to  do  good  what  a  very  happy  world 
this  would  be;  thanks  to  the  beneficent  giver 
of  all  good!  we,  do,  now  and  then,  see  an  ex- 
ample of  this  kind !  to  show  us  just  what  man 
shovild  be!)  We  must  endeavour  to  put  all 
the  blame  upon  the  bad  planet,  for  the  honor 
of  human  nature;  I  hope  this  apology  will 
suffice  for  their  highmightynesses — I  should  be 
sorry  if  they  were  to  take  it  into  their  heads 
to  be  in  great  dudgeon,  and  throw  my  poor 

little  letter  in  the  fire;  for  only  consider  my 



dear  Brother,  what  an  incalctilable  loss  it 
would  be;  I  believe  I  must  condemn  myself 
to  the  great  and  almost  impracticable  punish- 
ment of  holding  my  tounge,  for  the  sake  of 
preser[v]ing  this  most  precious  epistle,  and 
indeed  my  Brother  when  one  considers  what  a 
bitter  mouthfvill  it  is  to  restrain  ones  self 
from  abusing  these  worthy  nalers  and  poten- 
tates of  the  earth,  (Jim  George  and  Bony) 
it  would  not  be  considered  as  an  inconsider- 
able instance  of  self  denial  even  But  Miss  Bren- 
tons  school.  I  veryly  believe  I  should  get  the 
laughing  hysterics  were  I  ever  to  see  or  hear  of 
the  british  parliaments  speculating  upon  the 
contents  of  a  little  girls  letter,  to  see  if  they 
could  discover  any  thing  like /^'ea^ow  in  it.  ..." 
Irving   was   at   this   time   occupying   the 

lodgings  of  Brevoort  whom  he  calls  his  absent 
"wife,"  as  Margaret's  jesting   lines  record: 

"Mr  Irving  has  grown  quite  a  beauty,  I 

told  him  so  the  other  day  at  our  house,  think- 



ing  it  would  have  a  tendency  to  make  him 
very  civil  but  I  was  mistaken,  he  is  not  a  bit 
better  than  before,  his  face  is  not  clouded 
with  care  as  formerly  he  says  he  would  be 
perfectly  happy  if  his  wife  was  here;  who  do 
you  think  that  is?  a  wandering  poet, — ^who 
was  formerly  seen  in  America,  but  he  has 
taken  his  departiore  to  a  more  congenial  clime, 
in  order  to  perfect  himself  in  his  profession; 
ther's  great  suspicions  entertained  of  him  here, 
we  actually  hear  he  was  to  be  married  to 
some  great  scotch  lass,  this  report  has  made 
the  afore  said  husband  extremely  tmeasy, 
and  I  really  heard  his  mother  say  she  would 
turn  the  vagrant  out  of  doors  if  he  offered  to 
bring  any  of  his  high  cheek  bones  here, — 
so  if  you  should  chance  to  meet  with  him  in 
your  travels,  do  for  humanity's  sake  give  the 
poor  fellow  a  gentle  hint  respecting  home 

The  glimpses  that   Margaret  gives  us  of 
some  of  the  characters  in  the  Irving-Brevoort 

VOL.  II. 21.  321 


correspondence  are,  as  we  have  seen,  full  of 
little  personal  touches  that  could  have  been 
possible  only  to  a  girl  of  quick  discernment 
and  rare  wit;  but  perhaps  for  us  of  the  great 
city  that  extends  so  many  miles  along  the 
Hudson,  the  most  striking  paragraph  is  the 
one  wherein  Margaret  writes,  "I  find  so  many 
inducements  to  stay  in  the  country  that  I  very 
rarely  go  to  town." — The  "  country  "  was 
Eleventh  Street  and  Broadway ! 

On  the  outside  of  one  of  these  letters  from 
Margaret — one  addressed  to  Henry  Brevoort 
at  Birmingham,  in  the  care  of  Irving's  brother- 
in-law,  Henry  Van  Wart, — Brevoort  wrote  the 
following  verses  htimorously  indicative  of 
British  feeling  at  the  threats  of  Napoleon: 

Says  Bony  to  Jonney  I'll  soon  be  at  Dover 
Says  Jonney  to  Bony  that's  doubted  by  some 
Says  Bony  but  what  if  I  really  come  over, 
Says  Jonney  then  really  you'U  be  overcome. 

John    Howard    Payne    next    engages    our 

attention   with   some   lines   written   in    1813 



introducing  to  Brevoort  the  actor  Charles 
Kemble,  brother  of  John  Philip  Kemble  and 
Mrs.  Siddons,  and  himself  famous  as  actor, 
dramatic  reader,  and  theatrical  manager. 
Payne  was  intimate  with  both  Irving  and 
Brevoort,  as  he  was  indeed  with  many  other 
noted  men,'  such  as  Coleridge  and  -Charles 
Lamb.  He  and  Brevoort  were  bom  in  the 
same  year,  and  their  interest  in  the  stage  was 
long  a  bond  between  them;  while  with  Irving, 
Payne  has  various  points  of  biographical 
similarity  in  that  both  these  New  York 
authors  were  clerks  in  early  life,  and  both 
towards  the  end  of  their  careers  received 
appointments  from  the  United  States  Govern- 
ment in  recognition  of  their  services  to  litera- 
tvire.  But  while  Irving  is  remembered  for 
many  of  his  works,  John  Howard  Payne, 
whose  writings  are  perhaps  even  more  volumi- 
nous, would  long  ago  have  been  forgotten  had 
it  not   been  for  his  lyric  of  "Home,  Sweet 

Home,"  a  song  still  the  possession  of  myriads 



of  persons  of  whom  perhaps  not  a  handful  is 
aware  of  the  name  of  the  play  (Clari,  or  the 
Maid  of  Milan)  in  which  these  cherished 
verses  originally  appeared. 

Another  letter  relating  to  Irving's  and 
Brevoort's  interest  in  matters  of  the  theatre 
is  from  a  young  actress  with  whom,  it  would 
seem,  Brevoort  did  not,  after  his  return  from 
England  to  America,  care  to  maintain  a 
correspondence.  This  Miss  Booth  was  a 
member  of  the  same  company  as  Junius 
Brutus  Booth,  and  is  remembered  in  annals 
of  the  stage  mainly  because  of  her  request 
that  the  great  actor,  who  was  Edwin  Booth's 
father,  should  add  an  "e"  to  his  name,  lest 
she  and  he  be  thought  to  belong  to  the  same 

The  next  three  letters  carry  us  from  theatri- 
cal affairs  to  Brevoort's  more  intense  interest 
in  the  literary  career  of  his  friend.  A  brief 
note  from  Washington  Irving,  dated  London, 
Sept.  2 1st,  1 8 19,  has  to  do  with  the  Sketch 



Book,  which  is  again  the  topic  of  the  two 
letters  written  shortly  after  this  date  by 
Ebenezer  Irving  to  Brevoort.  In  these,  we 
have  further  evidence  of  the  collaboration  of 
Irving's  friend  and  Irving's  brother  in  connec- 
tion with  furthering  the  publication  and 
success  of  the  various  numbers  of  the  Sketch 
Book.  From  the  point  of  view  of  the  critic, 
the  most  noteworthy  lines  that  here  call  for 
comment  are  those  in  which  Ebenezer  ex- 
presses his  doubt  at  the  reception  of  the 
Legend  of  Sleepy  Holloiv — "a  tale  which  al- 
though a  pretty  thing  and  neatly  told  is  still 
a  tale."  Ebenezer  surmises  that  nine  out  of 
every  ten  of  the  female  readers  will  be  pleased 
with  it;  but  he  himself  finds  more  to  praise 
in  Irving's  articles  The  Mutability  of  Litera- 
ture and  John  Bull.  We  recall,  however,  that 
Brevoort,  with  more  perspicacity  and  perhaps 
a  deeper  feeling  for  sentiment  and  a  better 
sense  of  humor,  realized   at   once  that  the 

Legend  of  Sleepy  Hollow  was  one  of  the  best 



emanations  from  Irving' s  pen ;  a  judgment  that 
posterity  has  effectively  confirmed. 

The  letters  of  Brevoort  give  many  indica- 
tions of  his  interest  in  science,  drama,  and 
literature,  as  well  as  in  business  and  politics; 
and  his  directorship  in  the  National  Academy 
of  Arts  is  one  of  numerous  indications  that 
he  participated  in  this  realm  also  of  the  activi- 
ties of  his  time.  This  participation  is  shown  in 
a  practical  and  generous  aspect  in  financial  aid 
extended  to  Rembrandt  Peale.  In  the  letters 
of  1824  between  Brevoort  and  Peale  there  is 
considerable  interesting  comment  not  alone 
on  Peale's  proposed  portrait  of  George  Wash- 
ington, but  also  on  the  famous  portraits  by 
Stuart,  Pine,  and  Brevoort's  friend,  John 
Tnunbull.  Peale  was  of  the  opinion  that  his 
own  portrait  of  Washington  was  a  far  more 
faithfiol  piece  of  work  than  Stuart's,  which 
"was  taken  after  the  mouth  of  the  General 
had  been  distorted  by  the  rude  hands  of  the 

dentist. " 



Brevoort's  influence  as  a  patron  of  art  was 
invoked  not  alone  directly  by  Rembrandt 
Peale  in  connection  with  national  as  well  as 
private  commissions  'for  paintings,  but  was 
called  into  requisition  in  other  ways,  as,  for 
instance,  when  Vanderlyn,  after  receiving  a 
payment  in  advance  for  a  full -length  portrait 
of  Andrew  Jackson,  took  his  own  time  about 
the  completion  of  the  work.  To  Henry 
Brevoort,  James  Hamilton,  to  whom  Jackson 
had  offered  the  secretaryship  of  war,  and  who 
later  was  Governor  of  South  Carolina,  appeals, 
confident  that  Brevoort,  if  anyone,  can  stir 
the  sluggish  brush  of  the  recalcitrant  artist. 
It  was  Vanderlyn,  we  recall,  who  made  the 
most  dehghtful  portrait  of  Irving  as  a  young 

People  were  frequently  writing  to  Brevoort 
on  all  manner  of  topics.  From  Robert  Emmet, 
the  nephew  of  the  great  Irish  patriot,  and  him- 
self a  lawyer  of  high  rank,  there  is  a  very  witty 

letter  in  which  he  asks   Brevoort  for  sntiff 



and  a  novel  to  while  away,  the  teditun 
of  influenza.  Charles  Carroll  of  CarroUton 
requests  him  to  serve  as  his  proxy  in  financial 
affairs.  James  Kent  writes  to  Brevoort  con- 
cerning his  famous  Commentaries,  a  work  so 
popular  that  the  first  four  editions  of  10,000 
copies  were  sold  at  nine  dollars  a  copy, — ^the 
most  remunerative  American  book  of  its  time. 
Nor  is  it  alone  statesmen,  authors,  artists,  and 
actors  whose  letters  attest  the  important  civic 
position  of  Brevoort,  for  here  too  we  meet  with 
a  communication  from  General  Winfield  Scott, 
who  desires  Brevoort  to  interest  himself  in  a 
young  captain,  Alfred  Mordecai,  who  was 
graduated  from  West  Point  at  the  head  of  his 
class.  The  interest  shown  in  him  by  General 
Scott,  Mordecai  was  later  to  justify  not  only 
as  an  author  on  military  subjects  but  as  a 
member  of  important  military  commissions, 
especially  in  the  Crimea;  his  observations  in 
connection  with  that  commission  being  pub- 
lished by  order  of  Congress. 



A  letter  from  Peter  Irving  to  Brevoort, 
written  at  Rouen,  in  1828,  recalls  the  long 
friendship  between  these  two  men  and  their 
travels  in  Europe  fifteen  years  earlier;  while 
a  letter  from  James  Fenimore  Cooper,  written 
at  Paris  in  1831,  in  which  Cooper  seeks  to 
arrange  an  introduction  to  the  Marquis  de 
Marbois,  is  an  especially  interesting  missive, 
not  alone  because  of  the  evidence  it  adduces 
of  the  social  position  abroad  of  Washington 
Irving's  only  American  rival  in  contemporary 
literature,  but  also  because  of  the  picture  it 
gives  of  Marbois,  who  was  the  Secretary  of  the 
French  Legation  at  Washington  during  the 
Revolution,  and  who  figures  again  in  American 
history  on  account  of  his  appointment  by 
Napoleon  to  act  as  the  chief  agent  in  the 
cession  of  Louisiana  to  the  United  States. 
The  Marquis,  in  spite  of  his  venerable  age 
in  1 83 1,  seems  to  have  retained  the  liveli- 
ness of  youth  to  such  an  extent  that  in  styl- 
ing Lafayette  "the  Patron  of  Americans  in 



Paris"  he  proceeds  to  call  himself  the  "vice 

During  this  stay  in  France,  Brevoort  kept 
up  a  constant  correspondence  with  his  parents, 
and  from  these  family  letters  the  one  chosen 
for  publication  in  the  following  pages  has  been 
selected  because  of  its  relation  to  Brevoort's 
acquisition  of  property  on  which  to  this  day 
stands  the  house  that  he  was  later  to  erect  at 
24  Fifth  Avenue,  the  first  private  residence  in 
that  now  greatest  of  residential  streets.  It 
was  in  this  old  mansion  that  the  first  elaborate 
costume  ball  ever  took  place  in  our  city,  and 
within  its  walls  Washington  Irving  and  many 
other  well-known  authors  were  honored  guests. 

But  of  all  the  letters  written  from  France, 
the  one  which  will  appeal  most  to  the  student 
of  American  history  is  the  missive  addressed 
by  George  Washington  Lafayette  to  Henry 
Brevoort  and  the  other  members  of  the  Ameri- 
can committee  who  had  voiced  on  the  death  of 

General  Lafayette  the  sympathy  of  American 



friends    and     admirers.      The    devotion    of 

America   to   the  great   statesman   who  had 

espoused  the  Revolutionary  cause  with  all  the 

chivalry  of  youth  was  more  intense  than  has 

ever  been  shown  to  any  other  foreigner,  and 

far  exceeded  the  gratitude  of  France  for  the 

many  services  rendered  to  his  own  country 

by  that  truly  noble  man;  and  it  may  well  be 

believed  that  Lafayette's  son  was  not  merely 

indulging  in  the  characteristic  courtesy  of  the 

French  language  when  he  wrote :  "  Gentlemen, 

your   sympathy    softens    our   affliction    and 

spreads  a  salutary  bahn  on  otir  grief -shattered 


From  Paris  also,  eight  years  later,  in  1834, 

was  written  an  important  letter  of  Washington 

Irving,  of  which  excerpts  have  already  been 

published,  but  which  now  for  the  first  time 

appears  in  its  entirety, — a.  letter  written  when 

Irving  was  on  his  way  to  Madrid  as  Minister 

to    Spain.      Henrj'-    Brevoort's    oldest    son, 

Carson,  was  with  him  as  attach6,  and  through- 



out  the  letter  play  the  sentiments  of  Irving 's 
devotion  both  to  his  old  friend  and  his  old 
friend's  son. 

Two  more  missives  bring  us  to  the  end  of 
these  manuscripts — ^notes  that  are  included  on 
account  of  their  decided  local  interest.  The 
first  of  these,  dated  April  24th,  1843,  is  the 
communication  of  the  Committee  appointed 
by  the  Vestry  of  Grace  Church,  in  which 
Brevoort  is  asked  to  set  a  price  on  a  portion  of 
the  old  Brevoort  farm  on  Broadway.  Bre- 
voort in  answer  names  $35,000,  but  stipulates 
that  the  heirs  of  his  father's  estate  shall  be 
held  "harmless  from  any  assessment"  in  case 
Eleventh  Street  "should  hereafter  be  opened 
from  Broad  Way  to  the  Bowery."  The 
transaction  was  concluded,  and  Grace  Church 
(whose  architect  was  James  Renwick,  son  of 
Margaret  Brevoort)  still  firmly  retains  its 
place  amid  the  swift  eddies  of  those  com- 
mercial thoroughfares ;  its  lawns,  and  trees  and 

hedges  a  lyric  note  amid  the  strident  noises  of 



their  svirrotmdings.  For  those  of  us  who  have 
been  brought  by  the  letters  of  Brevoort  and 
of  Irving  into  touch  with  the  olden  days,  this 
little  green  oasis  of  the  garden  of  Grace  Church 
has  that  inefifable  charm  which  is  the  inter- 
mingling of  the  present  and  the  past.  Here 
young  Margaret  rejoiced  in  the  "shady  groves  " 
of  the  country;  and  here  old  Henry  Brevoort 
stood  fovir-square,  deaf  to  importunities  and 
threats,  resolved  that  no  street  shotild  cut 
past  his  home;  as,  indeed,  none  has,  even  to 
these  very  times.  And  here,  gazing  over  the 
green  hedge  that  rtms  along  the  Broadway 
fence,  you  shall  see,  of  a  summer's  day,  the 
magnolias  shedding  their  pink  blossoms  on 
the  little  lawns,  and,  it  may  be,  note  a  robin 
as  he  alights  on  the  old  svm-dial,  to  preen  his 
crimson  breast. 

G.  S.  H. 



It  will  be  observed  that  in  the  foregoing  "Introductory 
Notes"  there  are  references  to  a  few  letters  from  Irving  to 
Brevoort.  These  MSS. ,  discovered  after  the  original  pub- 
lication of  the  Irving  side  of  the  correspondence  between 
these  two  friends,  were  included  in  the  first  issue  of  the 
Brevoort  papers;  but  it  has  been  deemed  preferable,  in  the 
present  editions,  to  place  these  few  Irving  epistles  in  their 
proper  sequence  in  the  Irving  series.  It  has  not,  how- 
ever, seemed  necessary  to  effect  any  changes  that  might 
break  in  upon  the  continuity  of  Mr.  Hellman's  "Intro- 
ductory Notes";  all  the  more  so,  as  there  will  presumably 
be  few  readers  of  either  volume  who  will  not  have  the 
companion  work  upon  their  shelves. 









Marietta,  February  f-  1804. 

MY  DEAR  parents: — 

I  cannot  omit  this  opportunity  of  informing 
you  I  am  thus  far  in  safety. — My  journey  was 
rather  disagreeable  owing  to  tempestuous 
weather.  I  cannot  speak  with  precision  of 
what  may  occtir  to  my  benefit,  but  I  trust  my 
trouble  will  be  attended  to  with  all  the  success 
I  contemplated. — M-  Gilhnan  the  person  with 
whom  I  am  connected  resides  here. — I  am 
well  pleased  with  him,  and  believe  he  will  be 
very  serviceable. — In  making  this  tovir  I  may 
not  reap  much  actual  benefit,  but  I  shall 
certainly  form  such  connections,  as  will  ul- 
timately prove  very  advantageous. — Inform 
M"  Whetten  that  I  saw  Gen?  Putnam  &  a 

VOL.  II. 22.  337 

MARIETTA,  FEBRUARY  7!!}  1804 

Lawyer  Putnam,  who  remember  her  with 
pleasure  and  speak  in  high  terms  of  her  many 
patriotick  acts. — I  have  neither  time  nor 
inclination  to  make  any  remarks  on  the  coun- 
try through  which  I  have  passed,  in  fact  it 
affords  nothing  worthy  of  observation. — The 
Country  along  the  Ohio  River  is  settling  very 
fast — ^and  promises  in  a  few  years  to  become 
a  place  of  great  importance. — A  number  of 
vessels  are  built  annually  along  the  River,  and 
despatched  with  the  produce  of  the  Cotmtry  to 
different  parts  of  the  globe. — This  business 
is  of  infinate  advantage  to  its  inhabitants — 
Hemp  is  raised  in  considerable  quantities, 
amply  stifficient  for  the  rigging  of  their  vessels. 
— Coal  is  found  in  all  parts  of  the  country  in 
inexaustible  quantities. — 

I  suppose  you  have  heard  nothing  from  Bill, 
poor  fellow  I  shall  not  have  the  pleasure  of 
seeing  him  this  Spring. — I  cannot  possibly 
say  when  I  shall  have  the  pleasure  of  seeing 

you,   probably  not  before  August    next — I 



trust  then  to  meet  you  all  in  perfect  health. — 
May  God  preserve  you  untill  then  and  long 
after.     I  hope  the  Little  ones  are  well — ^re- 
member me  to  my  bowery  acquaintances — 
and  believe  me  to  be  most  affectionately  Your 
Henry  Brevoort,  Jr. 
I  beg   you   will   excuse   this   scroll — it  is 
scarcely  intelligable,  but  time  wiU  not  permit 
me  to  copy  it — so  take  it  as  with  all  its  blots 
and  scratches. — It's  probable  you  will  not 
hear  from  me  for  some  time  as  the  mails  in 
this  country  are  very  irregular. 

Adieu! — 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  6^  1805 

New  York,  March  6~  1803. 
sir: — 

The  desire  I  had  of  being  able  to  give  you 
some  agreeable  infonnation  has  caus'd  me  to 
postpone  writing  to  you  longer  than  I  should 
have  wish'd.  It  is  but  a  few  days  ago  that 
M'  Astor  has  positively  wrote  to  some  of  his 
friends  that  he  has  made  over  his  fur  business 
to  you,  advising  them  however  that  if  they 
chose  to  send  any  skins  down  he  will  be  glad 
to  buy  them  for  your  account.  Since  your 
departure  we  have  had  nothing  at  all  to  do 
in  that  way:  not  so  much  as  a  dozen  of  skins 
have  as  yet  been  brought  to  the  store. 

We  all  heartily  wish  you  may  meet  with 

better  luck  than  you  had  in  the  begin[n]ing  of 

your  journey,  and  that  some  good  business  may 

compensate  the  fatigues  you  have  undergone. 

this  wish  has  often  engross'd  our  conversation 

during  the  cold  weather  which  we  experienc'd 

as,  by  what  wc  felt,  we  form'd  an  idea  of  what 

you  had  to  encounter.     M-  A.  was  not  the 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  6*1!  1805 

last  to  think  of  you  on  those  occasions,  and 
after  having  receiv'd  the  letters  in  which  you 
mentioned  that  skins  were  scarce  &  their 
price  high,  he  told  me  several  times  that  had 
he  suppos'd  that  the  fur  business  tum'd  out 
so  poorly,  he  would  have  found  out  some  other 
employment  for  you  this  winter. 

The  truth  is  that  the  prospect  is  not  very 
favorable  at  present.  All  the  accounts  of 
sale  which  he  received  from  London  or  Am- 
sterdam state  some  loss,  he  has  already 
advis'd  you  of  it  &  mention'd  his  opinion 
as  to  the  prices  he  thinks  you  can  safely 
pay,  so  that  I  have  nothing  to  add  on  the 

I  receiv'd  lately  a  small  invoice  of  goods 
from  my  friends  which  were  directed  to  M'  A 
— conformable  to  the  liber[t]y  he  gave  me  last 
summer;  he  told  me  since  that  if  in  the  future 
they  send  me  some  more  Goods,  they  must 
consign  them  direct  to  you  &  I  wrote  to  my 

friends  accordingly. 


NEW  YORK,  MARCH  6«l  1805 

In  hopes  of  receiving  news  that  you  enjoy 
good  health  &  spirits,  I  am 

With  Consideration, 

Your  humble  serv* 

P.  Lherbette. 
H.  Brevoort,  Jr.,  Esq. 


MONTREAL,  MAY  9!!!  181 1 

Montreal,  May  g-  1811. 

DEAR  sir: — 

M'  Gillespie  has  fixed  our  departure  on  the 
morning  of  the  16  instant — Mr.  Pothier  is 
to  remain  in  Montreal  until  the  goods  from 
England  arrive  &  are  forwarded  to  S*  Josephs, 
which  will  probably  not  take  place  much  before 
the  20  June. — 

i  The  Gentlemen  were  sorry  to  learn  that  no 
permission  had  yet  been  granted  by  the  Secy 
of  the  Treasury  to  admit  the  goods  to  entry. 
I  understand  that  they  are  to  meet  and  consult 
on  that  and  other  subjects  this  day. — 

If  a  favoiwable  change  should  occur  &  in- 
telUgence  thereof  can  be  transmitted  to  St. 
Josephs  by  the  20th  of  August,  the  Agents  are 
of  opinion,  that  there  would  still  be  sufficient 
time;  but  should  nothing  be  obtained  by  that 
time  they  will  wait  tmtil  the  5  or  10  Sept  & 
then  return. — 

If  orders  are  not  rec^  at  St.  Joseph's  by 

the  5  of  August,  I  wish  you  inform  me  whether 


MONTREAL,  MAY  9«}  1811 

you  are  of  opinion  that  there  is  an  absolute 
necessity  that  I  should  remain  there  longer; 
I  am  rather  anxious  on  that  subject,  having 
made  no  arrangements  for  my  absence  from 
N  York  longer  than  the  i  September. — 

Letters  have  been  this  day  received  by  the 
N  W*  from  M'.  M?Gillivray,  which  state  that 
the  Beaver  sale  has  been  deferred  &  that  after 
it  had  taken  place  he  intended  returning  via 
N  York.— 

As  far  as  I  can  gather  without  making 
known  the  object  of  my  intentions,  the  Mkf 
Cy  will  either  sell  at  Mackinack  or  consign 
these  furs  to  some  person  in  New  York  for 
sale: — they  will  all  arrive  from  the  interiour 
within  the  month  of  July,  so  that,  that  part 
of  my  business  can  be  early  dispatched. — 

Mess"  Reed  &  Clark  were  both  disapointed 
at  not  hearing  from  you. — M^  R  will  take 
passage  with  Mr.  Pothier. 

If  you  send  a  message  to  Mk — ^he  ought  not 

♦  North  West  Company.  t  Mackinack. 


MONTREAL,  MAY  9!^  181 1 

to  travel  by  way  of  the  Lakes,  as  the  uncer- 
tainty of  getting  passage  accross  Erie  &  Huron 
would  cause  great  delay. 

M-  Pothier  will  probably  be  the  last  light 
canoe  from  Montreal,  &  the  quickest  convey- 

I  hope  you  have  not  omitted  to  transmit  y- 
draft  to  M-  Bleakley  on  my  account. — 
I  am,  D-  Sir, 

Y'.  Most  Obt. 

Henry  Brevoort,  Jr. 

I  annex  for  y-  information  (if  you  have  not 
received  it  before)  the  returns  from  Fond  du 
Lac  for  1809  &  1810. — 



9«}  1811 











3555— short 








Brown  &  Silver 

Short  8170 











John  Jacob  Astor,  Esq. 
.  New  York. 


ST.  JOSEPH'S,  JUNE  25^^  181 1 

St.  Joseph's,  June  25-  1811. 

MY  DEAR  sir: — 

I  have  just  written  a  long  epistle  to  M' 
Astor  to  whom  I  refer  you  for  particulars,  not 
having  time  to  repeat  them. — 

The  aspect  of  the  Fur  Company's  affairs, 
at  present  looks  as  unfavourable  as  is  possible; 
&  as  M-  A  in  one  of  his  Letters  to  me  intimates 
that  before  my  return  you  are  likely  to  become 
a  stockholder,  I  now  advise  you  by  all  means 
to  wait  my  return  before  you  are  persuaded 
to  take  a  single  step. — This  of  course  is  only 
between  ourselves. — 

I  am  very  anxious  respecting  my  affairs  in 
New  York,  particularly  as  I  entertain  not  the 
most  distant  hope  of  being  actively  employed  in 
behalf  of  the  Company — ^by  reason  of  the  son- 
inlaw — and  consequently  shall  return  as  soon 
as  I  can,  without  forfeiting  my  engagements. — 

I  hope  &  trust  you  will  meet  no  particular 
obstruction — MT  A  expresses  his  willingness  to 

assist  in  case  of  need. — 


ST.  JOSEPH'S,  JUNE  25^^  181 1 

I  have  heard  nothing  from  the  Capt  from 
N  York.  Mr  M^Gillivray  informs  me  that  he 
called  on  Capt  Ward  in  London,  and  as  it  was 
a  matter  of  importance  that  so  large  a  parcel 
of  Peltries  should  be  sent  out  of  the  English 
Market,  he  offered  his  influence  to  obtain  the 
Vessels  liberation,  but  on  learning  the  circum- 
stances of  her  capture,  he  found  it  impossible 
to  render  him  the  least  assistance. 

I  shall  confidently  look  for  a  letter  from  you 
at  Montreal  by  the  20  August,  when  it  is 
probable  I  may  be  there. 

Remember  me  affecy  to  the  family  &  to  the 
good  old  people  in  the  Bowery. 
I  am,  My  D?  Uncle, 
Y^  Most  Affec.  f^ 

H.  Brevoort,  Jr. 
Mr.  John  Whetten 
New  York. 


ABBOTSFORD,  APRIL  23d  1813 

Abbotsford,  April  23-  18 13. 

MY  DEAR  sir: — 

I  beg  you  to  accept  my  best  thanks  for  the 

uncommon  degree  of  entertainment  which  I 

have    received    from    the    most    excellently 

jocose  history  of  New  York.     I  am  sensible 

that  as  a  stranger  to  American  parties  and 

politics  I  must  lose  much  of  the  concealed 

satire  of  the  piece  but  I  must  own  that  looking 

at  the  simple  and  obvious  meaning  only  I  have 

never  read  any  thing  so  closely  resembling  the 

stile  of  Dean  Swift  as  the  annals  of  Diedriech 

Knickerbocker    I  have  been  employed  these 

few  evenings  in  reading  them  aloud  to  M" 

S.  &  two  ladies  who  are  our  guests  and  our 

sides  have  been  absolutely  sore  with  laughing, 

I  think  too  there  are  passages  which  indicate 

that  the  author  possesses  powers  of  a  different 

kind  &  has  some  touches  which  remind  me 

much  of  Sterne.     I  beg  you  will  have  the 

kindness  to  let  me  know  when  M-  Irvine  takes 

pen  in  hand  again  for  assuredly  I  shall  expect 


ABBOTSFORD,  APRIL  23^  18 13 

a  very  great  treat  which  I  may  chance  never 
to  hear  of  but  through  your  kindness. 
Believe  me  Dear  Sir 

Your  obliged  htmible  serv- 

Walter  Scott 
H.  Brevoort,  Esq. 


Liverpool,  Sept.  12-,  18 13. 

MY  DEAR  sir: — 

This  will  be  handed  you  by  M-  Charles 
Kemble,  concerning  whose  plans  I  have 
already  written  you.  The  professional  repu- 
tation of  M'  Kemble  will  supercede  anything 
I  can  say  on  that  subject,  but  of  those  high 
personal  excellencies  which  elevate  him  far 
above  the  mass  {not  merely  of  actors  hut)  of 
men,  I  have  reason  to  speak  with  fervency 
and  decision.  You  will  confer  a  favor  on  me 
by  seconding  the  view  of  M^  Kemble  in 
America,  with  your  influence  &  advice. 
BeHeve  me, 
Dear  Sir 

Ever  truly  Yrs 
John  Howard  Payne. 
H.  Brevoort,  Esq. 


LONDON,  JUNE  2^  1816 

London,  June  2- 1816. 

MY  DEAR  sir: — 

Mt  Bibby's  return  to  New  York  affords 
me  an  opportunity  of  once  again  addressing 
you,  yet  I  can  hardly  persuade  myself  to  it, — • 
since  the  idea  of  being  considered  troublesome 
is  strongly  impressed  on  my  mind,  for  (if  I 
recollect)  this  is  the  second  or  third  time  I 
have  had  the  honour  of  writing  you,  without 
being  favour'd  with  your  reply.  Well? — I 
positively  do  flatter  myself  that  you  will  for- 
give the  intrusion — and  since  I  have  the  prom- 
ise of  so  able  a  pleader  as  M'  Bibby,  I  cannot 
I  am  sure  fail  of  obtaining  your  pardon.  In- 
deed we  feel  gratified  to  M'  Washington 
Irving  for  his  introduction  to  M-  Bibby — ^who 
we  have  found  a  most  amiable  young  man,  and 
I  regret  to  think  that  our  managers  have  not 
acted  with  more  liberality  to  him  than  they 
have,  for  he  has  displayed  a  great  deal  of  merit 
in  his  Pertinax  &  Shylock,  and  received  every 

applause  that  could  be  bestow'd;  but  I  need 


LONDON,  JUNE  24  1816 

not  tell  you  how  much  it  rests  in  the  power  of 
managers  to  forward  the  views  of  a  performer, 
— ^they  did  not  exert  themselves  to  put  M- 
Bibby  forward, — but  I  trust  his  talent  will  be 
duly  appreciated  among  his  friends  on  the 
other  side  of  the  water.  We  shall  be  all 
anxiety  to  learn. 

London  is  likely  to  be  more  gay  this  season 
than  for  many  years  past,  on  account  of  the 
Royal  Marriage.  I  wish  you  could  have 
enjoy'd  the  treat  of  M"  Siddons'  acting  the 
other  night,  the  shades  of  all  men  of  taste  I 
favoured  taking  a  peep  at  this  queen  of 
Tragedy.  Miss  O'Neill  loses  nothing  in  at- 
traction, but  is  rather  improved  in  her  acting 
— ^if  improvement  is  possible — than  otherwise. 
I  do  not  doubt  but  M"  Barnes  will  prove  a 
great  acquisition  to  the  New  York  Theatric 

I  must  now  present  Mr.  Naime's  remem- 
brance to  you — ^with  those  of  my  family — ^who 
unite  with  me  in  requesting  that  you  will 

VOL.  II. — 23.  353 

LONDON,  JUNE  2^  1816 

oblige  us  with  a  few  lines  when  opportunity 
And  now  I  must  subscribe  myself  (in  haste) 
Y-  sincere  friend 

S.  A.  Booth. 

May  I  request  you  to  offer  my  regards  to 
all  I  have  the  happiness  to  know.  But  I 
beg  most  particularly  to  be  remember'd  to 
M-  Kemble  and  M-  Swart  (wout).  I  hear  he 
is  now  perfectly  happy.  I  have  not  heard  a 
word  from  M'  W —  Irving  for  an  age  past, 
but  I  hear  he  is  well,  and  I  rejoice  to  say 
M'  P —  Irving  is  again  in  possession  of  health. 


LONG  BRANCH,  SEPT.  28*  1819 
Long  Branch,  Sept.  28-  j8ig. 


With  this  I  forward  you  a  packet  from 
Wash"  inclosed  to  me;  it  contains  but  one 
article  and  whether  any  other  has  been  sent 
or  not  I  am  ignorant.  His  letter  to  me  ac- 
companying this  parcel  contains  but  two  lines, 
merely  requesting  me  to  hand  it  to  you — ^he 
has  however  no  doubt  written  to  you  respect- 
ing it. 

The  success  of  the  "Sketch  Book"  is  ex- 
tremely gratifying.  I  imderstand  that  the 
i^.*  No.  is  off  and  that  you  are  about  putting 
a  2'?  edition  to  press.  Jn°  T.  says  that  you 
had  an  idea  of  selling  it  to  Wiley — for  ^500 — . 
I  think  it  rather  low  if  the  editions  usually 
average  a  profit  of  $600 — ^As  the  work  has 
taken  a  handsome  run  and  is  a  favorite,  I  am 
inclined  to  believe  that  a  choice  of  purchasers 
can  be  made — ^the  best  in  every  considerable 
place  would  willingly  bargain  for  sufficient 

to  supply  their  particular  market  under  the 


LONG  BRANCH,  SEPT'.  28!^  1819 

agreement  that  you  sell  to  no  one  else  there, 

I  think  by  some  such  arrangement  good  men 

may  be  commanded  in  every  place  without 

risque  of  loss — ^perhaps  if  those  persons  were 

written  to  before  putting  an  edition  to  press, 

requesting  to  know  what  ntimber  they  would 

respectively  wish  mentioning  that  no  more 

than  the  whole  number  thus  ordered  would  be 

printed  it  might  be  the  means  of__taking  off 

a  larger  number  at  once  and  when   another 

edition  should  be  called  for  the  same  method 

might  be  pursued. 

I  have  not  understood  whether  the  quantity 

of  the  2^  &  3^  Nos.  printed  was  larger  than  the 

i^  but  I  should  suppose  that  the  1°*  being 

all  off  already,  the  quantity  of  the  succeeding 

nimibers  might  be  made  up  to  what  we  first 

thought  of  (4000) — if  it  should  be  thought 

proper  that  the  number  in  each  edition  should 

be  the  same  that  can  be  easily  complied  with 

by  adding  to  the  title  page  of  one  half — 

"Second    Edition"    and    selling    them    last. 


LONG  BRANCH,  SEPT.  28th  1819 

My  suggestions  as  to  mode  of  putting  ofiE  the 
work  arise  from  my  anxiety  of  making  the 
most  of  it  for  Wash.  I  have  no  expectation  of 
being  in  New  York  until  the  alarm  of  fever 
subsides  when  I  shall  be  very  happy  in  doing 
any  thing  to  assist  you  in  these  matters,  mean 
while  should  you  wish  anything  from  me,  a 
letter,  put  on  board  the  Steam  boat  Franklin 
for  Shrewsbtiry  directed  to  me  at  "  Capt.  War- 
dell's  Long  branch,"  will  reach  me.  I  write 
in  haste  but  have  time  enough  to  assure  you 
that  I  am 

Yotirs  very  truly 

Eben?  Irving. 


LONG  BRANCH,  OCTOBER  3^  18 19 
Long  Branch,  Oct.  3-  181Q. 


I  wrote  a  few  days  since  and  sent  you 
an  article  for  the  Sketch  book  which  I  had 
just  received  from  Washington.  Ch?  Baldwin, 
Esq.  who  did  me  the  favor  of  taking  it  prom- 
ised to  deliver  it  to  you  immediately  or  put  it 
in  the  Post  office.  Yesterday  I  received  the 
Manuscript  of  N°  4 — it  ought  to  have  reached 
me  on  Monday  evening.  I  expect  to  avail 
myself  of  the  politeness  of  M-  Lippincot  (of 
the  firm  of  Stephens  &  Lippincot)  to  send  it 
to  you  with  this,  tomorrow.  I  have  over- 
looked the  N?  and  think  two  of  the  articles 
("The  Mutability  of  Literature"  and  "John 
'QvlV  fine — but  a  little  doubt  the  reception  of 
the  tale  which  though  a  pretty  thing  and  neatly 
told  is  still  a  tale.  I  have  little  doubt  however 
but  that  nine  out  of  ten  of  the  female  readers 
will  be  pleased  with-it.  Wash,  complains  in 
his  letter  to  me  of  our  having  neglected  to  send 

him  a  copy  of  the  work  promptly;  it  seems 



that  he  was  favored  with  the  sight  of  a  copy  of 
the  i^-*  N?  by  a  Gentleman  who  had  received 
it  nearly  a  raonth  before  the  one  sent  him  had 
come  to  hand.  He  wishes  that  copies  might 
be  dispatched  to  him  before  they  are  published 
here  if  practicable — ^both  he  and  the  Doctor 
are  highly  pleased  with  the  style  and  execution. 
I  am  happy  to  hear  such  favorable  accounts 
of  the  health  of  the  City  and  hope  I  shall  be 
able  to  return  in  ten  or  twelve  days. 

Yotirs  very  sincerely 

Eben^  Irving. 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  2^  1824 
New  York,  January  2-  1824. 

DEAR   sir: — 

I  regret  to  kam  that  your  family  has 
been  afflicted  by  ill  health  &  that  your 
professional  labours  have  been  so  unfor- 
tuna,tely  interrupted.  I  cheerfully  assent  to 
your  request  to  postpone  the  repayment 
of  the  loan  until  the  month  of  March  & 
hasten  to  assure  you  that  the  repose  of 
the  Coturt  of  death  is  in  no  danger  of  being 
disturbed  by  this  incident. — In  the  course 
of  the  month  of  March  however,  I  shall  be 
greatly  obliged  by  a  punctual  return  of  the 
money. — 

Your  idea  of  painting  a  national  portrait 
of  Washington  is  certainly  an  excellent  one 
&  in  my  opinion  cannot  fail  of  being  suc- 
cessful. Would  it  not  be  advisable  to 
associate  it  with  some  historical  incident 
of  his  life? — Stuart's  likeness  has  hitherto 
usurped  the  place  of  every  other  in  public 

opinion  &   there  is   no  doubt  that  it  pos- 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  2^  1824 

sesses  great  merit,  but  it  was  taken  after  the 
mouth  of  the  General  had  been  distorted 
by  the  rude  hands  of  the  dentist,  and  does 
not  do  justice  to  the  natural  expression  of  his 

Yours  will  probably  exhibit  him  earlier  in 
life,  and  hence  you  will  be  enabled  to  remedy 
this  striking  defect. — 

In  the  picture  that  I  possess  by  Pine,  his 
mouth  is  one  of  the  most  expressive  features 
and  in  perfect  keeping  with  the  other  parts  of 
his  face. — ^A  skilful  physiognomist  would  in 
my  opinion  at  once  point  out  this  glaring 
defect  in  Stuart's  picture,  without  any  knowl- 
edge of  the  original. — 

You  have  probably  not  forgotten  the  picture 
we  saw  at  Paff's,  said  to  be  by  Raphael. — The 
owner  of  it  was  kind  enough  to  place  it  in  my 
hands  previously  to  his  return  to  South  Amer- 
ica, &  I  promised  to  use  every  means  of  ascer- 
taining  its   real   value. — M-   J.  R.  Murray, 

from  the  first,  was  under  strong  impression 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  2^  1824 

that  it  might  be  an  early  picture  of  Raphael 
&  it  affords  me  great  satisfaction  that  his 
opinion  has  been  confirmed  in  a  remarkable 
manner  by  an  Italian  artist  lately  arrived  in 
New  York  in  the  family  of  M^  Dale.  This 
gentleman  who  is  a  very  respectable  profes- 
sional painter  is  positive  that  the  picture  is  an 
undoubted  Raphael. — There  is  a  picture  in  the 
collection  of  the  King  of  Naples,  regularly 
traced  from  the  hands  of  Raphael,  the  same 
in  design,  with  the  exception  of  the  rag  of  a 
curtain  in  the  corner  of  M-  Seton's  picture, 
which  this  gentleman  has  studied  &  copied. 
The  copy  he  brought  with  him,  &  compared  it 
with  the  picture  in  question,  which  after  a 
minute  examination  he  pronounced  to  be  a 
genuine  picture  by  Raphael,  painted  anterior 
to  the  one  in  Naples  which  he  conceives  to  be 
a  more  mature  effort  of  the  great  painter's 

Now  I  really  think  his  opinion  entitled  to 

great  weight  &  it  will  give  me  great  pleasure 


NEW  YORK,  JANUARY  2^  1824 

for  the  sake  of  my  f?  Seton  that  it  may  be 
confirmed  by  fvirther  testimony. — 
I  am 

Dear  Sir 

Very  Sincerely  Y? 

Henry  Brevoort,  J" 
Rembrandt  Peale  Esq. 


PHILADELPHIA,  JUNE  13!^  1824 
Philad°  June  13-  1824. 

DEAR  sir: — 

I  was  ignorant  until  today  that  you  had 
answered  my  last  letter  &  was  uneasy  from  an 
apprehension  that  you  were  not  pleased  with 
the  state  of  the  case. — But  your  polite  note, 
which  I  have  just  received,  relieves  me  from 
that  degree  of  apprehension,  tho'  not  from  the 
consequences  of  my  not  having  had  "my 
hopes  realized."  When  I  last  wrote  to  you 
I  had  every  reason  to  believe  that  Congress 
would  have  passed  the  Resolution  before  them. 
I  learned  too  late  that  they  would  have  passed 
it  to  procure  the  Portrait  before  them,  but 
many  of  them,  dissatisfied  with  the  large 
Paintings  by  Trumbull,  were  indisposed  to 
engage  another  without  knowing  what  it 
might  be. — Notwithstanding  this,  had  it  not 
been  for  the  tedious  Tariff  Bill,  it  would  have 
passed  in  the  reduced  form  in  which  it  was 
reported  to  the  House — i.  e.  for  an  Eques- 
trian Portrait  with  an  elegant  frame  at  $3000. 


PHILADELPHIA,  JUNE  la^!  1824 

In  the  Senate  it  was  proposed  to  give  me 
$5000  without  saying  anything  about  Frame. 
It  may  be  best  on  the  whole  that  the  former 
Resolution  did  not  pass,  as  I  shall  probably  be 
better  remunerated — ^And  I  have  now  deter- 
mined to  paint  the  picture  the  same  as  if  it 
had  been  ordered,  v/ith  the  expectation  that 
on  presenting  to  them  a  magnificent  and 
finished  Picture  they  will  not  hesitate  giving 
me  the  largest  sum. 

The  Portrait  is  daily  advancing  in  reputa- 
tion— &  will  have  time  before  the  next  Session 
to  be  fairly  established  as  the  only  authentic 
Likeness.  In  addition  to  the  Testimony  given 
in  Washington  &  Baltimore  (part  of  which  has 
been  published)  I  have  received  a  letter  from 
Bishop  White  who  says  that  my  "Picture  is 
identified  in  his  mind  with  the  features,  the 
countenance  &  the  character  of  that  great 
man."  Another  from  Major  Jackson  (who 
was  with  him  when  Washington  sat  to  Stuart) 

universally  regarded  as  the  most  competent 


PHILADELPHIA,  JUNE  i3«;  1824 

judge,  having  served  as  his  aid — ^was  Secretary 
to  the  Convention — lived  3  years  with  Wash- 
ington as  his  private  Secretary — and  travelled 
in  the  same  Carriage  with  him  through  the 
United  States.  He  says  that  "in  striking 
similitude  of  features  and  characteristic  ex- 
pression of  countenance  he  considers  it  the 
best  and  most  faithful  Portrait  of  the  great 
Father  of  his  Country  &  that  he  is  persuaded 
it  will  be  gratefully  appreciated  by  the  nation. ' ' 
Another  from  M-  Rush,  the  Carver,  who 
"fought,  worked,  and  eat  with  him"  in  which 
he  pronotinces  it  "  the  Best  likeness  which  he 
has  seen  on  Canvas."  Judge  Peters,  Judge 
Tilghman,  Col:  Forest  &  Col:  M^Lane  will 
give  their  enthusiastic  and  unqualified  ap- 
probation to  be  conjoined  with  the  above  & 
those  of  Judge  Marshall,  Judge  Washington, 
Col:  Howard,  Ed:  Livingston,  M-  Custis, 
Ch-  Carroll,  Gen :  Harper,  Gen :  Udree,  Rufus 
King,  &c  which  I  have.  In  short,  within  the 
Space  of  three  months,  since  which  it  was  pro- 


PHILADELPHIA,  JUNE  i3«}  1824 

duced,  it  has  triumphed  over  the  deepest 
prejudice  that  ever  Portrait  had  to  contend 
with.  It  was  already  decided  that  the  Por- 
trait by  Stuart,  whose  reputation  was  so  well 
established,  was  destined  to  be  transmitted 
to  our  posterity,  as  it  was  spread  all  over  the 
world,  as  the  true  Hkeness — and  altho'  faults 
were  fotmd  with  it  by  those  who  had  known 
the  Original  himself,  the  objections  did  not 
spread  far  around  them  &  the  objectors  were 
dying  oflE  fast.  But  my  Portrait  has  united 
their  testimony — enables  them  to  designate 
the  faults  of  the  other,  and  they  have  unani- 
mously pronounced  a  Verdict  which  must 
become  the  law  of  the  land.  I  have  therefore 
been  well  employed  in  executing  this  painting 
— and  I  cannot  help  thinking  I  shall  be  well 
employed  in  making  a  splendid  Equestrian 
Picture,  altho'  neither  can  immediately  fur- 
nish me  with  any  pecuniary  assistance,  much 
as  I  stand  in  need  of  it,  with  a  large  family  of 

Girls.     But  it  is  my  duty  to  make  this  effort, 


PHILADELPHIA,  JUNE  13th  1824 

because  it  would  be  unjust  to  neglect  the 
opportunity  of  profiting  by  so  singular  an 
advantage.  If  the  general  and  State  govern- 
ments do  not  reward  me,  I  should  then  be 
fairly  justified  in  renouncing  my  Country. 
In  the  meantime  the  little  Portrait  painting 
which  I  may  procure,  will  barely  suffice  for 
my  family  &  I  am  doubtful  whether  I  can 
procure  the  means  of  extricating  my  Court  of 
Death  from  its  unprofitable  seclusion — The 
only  prospect  I  have  is  that  MT  Pendleton 
who  will  return  to  New  York  in  a  few  weeks 
may  repay  you  the  money  and  take  the  Picture 
to  England  for  me. 

The  service  you  have  rendered,  under  the. 
circumstances  in  which  I  was  affected,  was 
peculiarly  grateful  to  me — and  I  hope  will 
always  be  reviewed  by  you  with  satisfaction, 
when  you  reflect  on  the  nature  of  its  purpose. 
If  you  should  not  visit  Philadelphia  this  Sum- 
mer, I  hope  to  send  my  picture  to  New  York 

in  the  Auttimn  when  you  may  decide  upon  its 



merits,  at  least  as  a  Portrait  in  a  new  style — • 
which  indeed  is  much  commended.  It  is  my 
intention  to  take  the  Original  to  London, 
accompanied  by  all  its  precious  testimony — It 
will  be  a  good  introduction  to  me,  in  conjunc- 
tion with  the  commissions  to  paint  for  you 
&  others  the  likenesses  of  persons  whose  rank 
in  Society  will  procure  me  some  notoriety. 

In  case  of  your  absence  from  the  City  when 
Mr  Pendleton  may  arrive  will  you  designate 
the  manner  he  may  act  in  obtaining  the  Pic- 
ture should  it  be  in  his  power? 

Believe  me  with  great  respect 
Your  most  obliged 
And  Obt  Servt— 

Rembrandt  Peale 

VOL.  11. — 24.  369 

NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  22^  1825 
{New  York)  Feb.  22^,  {1825). 

MY  DEAR   sir: — 

I  must  beg  of  you  (if  you  have  it)  to  send 
me  some  snuff — ^no  matter  how  old.  It  may 
be  stale  &  flat  but  cannot  be  unprofitable.  I 
am  now  confined  to  my  room  for  the  second 
time  this  season  with  the  influenza  and  I  have 
been  for  twelve  hours  without  a  pinch.  It  is 
bad  enough  in  the  ordinary  occurrences  of  life 
to  be  at  the  last  pinch,  but  I  have  got  past 
that  crisis,  and  my  hopes  are  now  centered  in 
the  first  pinch  of  what  you  may  send  me.  Poor 
Falstaff  babbled  of  green  fields  in  his  last  mo- 
ments &  I  find  my  thoughts  are  beginning  to 
run  on  tobacco  plantations.  If  you  would 
save  me  from  a  Calenture  send  me  some  sus- 
tenance, were  it  only  a  "remainder  biscuit." 
If  you  have  among  your  books  a  translation  of 
an  old  Spanish  Novel  called  "Guzman  D'Al- 
farache"  written  about  the  time  of  Cervantes, 
you  would  add  much  to  the  comforts  of  my 

present  condition  by  sending  it  to  me;  and  it 


NEW  YORK,  FEBRUARY  22^  1825 

would  delight  me  much  to  accompany  a  certain 
Master  Liihgow  in  his  travels,  who  among  all 
his  privations,  I  dare  say  never  wanted  a  pinch 
of  Lundy  Foot,  at  least  while  he  peregrinated 
in  Ireland.  This  last  book  you  were  good 
enough  to  offer  me  some  time  ago.  I  hope 
you  have  all  escaped  the  prevailing  epidemic. 
My  children  have  all  had  it.  My  best  re- 
spects to  M"  Brevoort. 

Very  truly  yours 

R.  Emmet. 
H.  Brevoort  Esq. 


Washington  City,  Dec.  25-  1825. 

MY  DEAR   sir: — 

I  will  be  extremely  obliged  to  you  to  perform 
a  commission  for  me  in  which  I  feel  much 
personal  anxiety. — 

At  the  strong  solicitation  made  by  Vander- 
lyn,  the  painter  himself,  I  exerted  my  in- 
fluence last  winter  with  the  City  Council  of 
Charleston  to  obtain  for  him  a  contract  to 
paint  a  full  length  likeness  of  Genl.  Jackson. 
Under  a  most  positive  assurance  on  his  part 
that  the  picture  should  be  finished  on  the  first 
of  last  May,  I  drew  on  the  Council  for  one 
half  of  its  price  which  was  advanced  to  Van- 
derlyn.  Instead  of  completing  his  contract 
he  has  only  renewed  his  application  for  more 
money  which  was  done  last  August,  at  that 
time  promising  that  the  picture  should  be 
forwarded  in  four  weeks.  Up  however  to  the 
period  of  my  departure  the  picture  had  not 

You  will  therefore  do  me  an  essential  favor 


to  ascertain  whether  he  has  sent  the  picture, 
and  if  it  is  yet  unfinished  be  so  good  as  to  hand 
him  the  enclosed  Letter  which  I  leave  open  for 
your  perusal. — 

You  will  be  doing  me  a  favor  and  rendering 
the  corporation  a  service  if  Vanderlyn  should 
yet  be  procrastinating  to  endeavour  to  appeal 
to  his  feelings  &  pride  as  a  Gentleman  should 
he  have  any  of  these  impulses  left. — 

With  my  most  respectful  recollections  to 
Mrs.  Brevoort, — 

I  remain,  My  Dear  Sir, 
Very  respectfully  &  truly 

Your  ob  Svt 
J.  Hamilton,  Jr. 

Should  Vanderlyn  either  be  working  at  the 

picture,  or  about  to  ship  it,  in  this  case  it 

would  perhaps  be  best  to  withhold  the  delivery 

of  my  Letter,  as  I  do  not  wish  causelessly  to 

wound  his  feelings. — ^You  will  do  for  me  a 

friendly  office  if  you  can  tu"ge  him  in  any  way 

to  the  fulfillment  of  his  engagement. — 


BALTIMORE,  MAY  24^5  1826 

Baltimore,  May  2^-  1826. 
DEAR  sir: — 

I  inclose  at  your  suggestion  a  proxy  to  vote 
for  me  at  the  next  annual  meeting  of  Stock- 
holders of  the  Montreal  Bank  which  is  to 
take  place  of  5th  June  next. 

You  may  fill  up  the  blank  in  your  own  name 
or  in  that  of  any  other  individual  in  whom  you 
may  have  confidence.  Having  the  utmost 
reliance  in  your  discretion  I  leave  you  free  to 
act  for  me  in  this  business  after  having  pre- 
viously examined  into  the  affairs  of  the  Bank. 
I  have  no  desire  to  lend  myself  to  the  views  of 
any  party,  but  if  after  mature  deliberation  it 
shall  appear  quite  satisfactory  to  you  that  a 
change  in  the  direction  will  benefit  the  In- 
stitution you  will  be  pleased  to  act  accord- 
ingly. Beggin[g]  to  hear  from  you  on  this 
subject  on  your  return,  I  remain  with  respect, 
Dear  Sir 

Y^  most  hum.  Serv- 
Ch.  Carroll  of  Carrollton 
To  Henry  Brevoort,  Jun',  Esq. 


ROUEN,  1828 

(Peter  Irving — the  "  Doctor  "  had  been,  as  we 
recall,  Brevoort's  travelling  companion  in  early 
years.  He  wrote,  however,  very  rarely  to  Bre- 
voori,  leaving  most  of  the  correspondence  to 
Washington.  It  is  thus  all  the  more  to  he 
regretted  that  the  first  two  pages  of  the  following 
missive  have  disappeared.^ 

My  brother  Washington  is  at  Seville,  busily- 
occupied  on  some  writings  which  are  facilitated 
by  his  residence  in  Spain,  and  which  he  wishes 
to  get  in  such  a  state  of  preparation  as  to  be 
out  of  danger,  before  he  leaves  that  coiintry. 
He  is  fearful  that  the  writing  mood  may 
desert  him  when  he  gets  again  abroad  in  the 
world.  He  has  completed  an  abridgment  of 
his  history  of  Columbus  in  one  volume,  and 
the  manuscript  was  to  proceed  from  New  York 
in  the  Brig  Francis  to  sail  from  Cadiz  in  about 
the  last  week  of  December.  I  trust  it  will 
have  reached  its  destination  before  you  get 

this  letter.     He  was  induced  to  make  this 


ROUEN,  1828 

epitome  by  some  articles  in  the  New  York 
American  between  the  20th  and  30th  Septem- 
ber, by  which  it  appeared  that  some  anony- 
mous person  had  announced  an  intention  to 
take  the  materials  from  his  work  and  publish 
an  abridged  life  of  Columbus,  To  protect 
his  work  from  being  garbled  and  mangled  he 
made  an  epitome  himself. 

I  regret  to  send  you  so  brief  a  letter  after 
so  long  an  interval,  but  I  have  several  to  write 
for  the  Packet,  and  the  emergency  occurs  on  a 
sudden,  as  my  parcel  must  be  despatched  for 
Havre  this  evening. 

One  word  respecting  myself  before  I  close. 

My  health  has  been    considerably  battered 

during  the  last  ten  years.     I  had  three  or  four 

years  of  severe  rheiunatism,  and  nearly  three 

of  a  very  troublesome  headache.     Fortunately 

I  am  at  present  free  from  both,  and  am  passing 

the  winter  pretty   comfortably   by   a   snug 

fireside,   surrounded   by   old   books,   in   this 

venerable   old   city,    the    Capital   of   Upper 


ROUEN,  1828 

Normandy.  I  think  it  probable  that  I  shall 
turn  out  in  the  spring,  like  a  snake  that  has 
cast  his  skin,  in  robuster  health  than  I  have 
been  for  several  years. 

The  Steam  concern  in  which  I  have  an 
interest,  has  been  doing  business  to  a  fair 
profit  during  the  past  year,  and  the  prospects 
are  also  fair  for  the  present. 

I  am  my  dear  Brevoort,  with  affectionate 


P.  Irving. 


NEW  YORK,  SEPTEMBER  28«l  1830 

St.  Mark's  Place  (8th  St.) 
September  28-  1830. 


Last  evening  came  up  to  see  me,  M-  Hone 
&  handed  me  from  you  the  2  Vols,  in  French 
of  the  Discussions  upon  the  Civil  Code,  8c  for 
which  I  am  greatly  obliged  to  you. 

I  believe  you  took  with  you  when  you  went 
to  France  some  years  ago,  the  ist  Edition  of 
my  Commentaries.  However,  whether  you 
did  or  not,  I  wish  you  to  possess  the  2d  which 
is  a  more  correct  and  greatly  enlarged  &f  im- 
proved Edition,  and  I  annex  an  order  on  my 
agents  (Messrs.  Clayton  &  Van  Norden)  in 
whose  possession  they  are,  for  a  Sett  for  you. 
I  regret  to  put  you  to  the  trouble  of  sending  for 
them.  They  are  unbound  &  I  own  none  else, 
as  M-  Halsted  no  longer  keeps  a  Bookstore 
himself,  &  all  the  Booksellers  buy  of  them. 
You  will  be  obliged  therefore  to  have  them 
bound  (if  you  wish  it)  at  Paris  to  suit  yotu* 



NEW  YORK,  SEPTEMBER  28«^  1830 

I  wish  you  a  pleasant  voyage  and  that  you 
may  meet  your  family  in  Health  &  Happiness. 

Yours  most  truly 

James  Kent. 

Henry  Brevoort,  Esq. 


PARIS,  1 83 1 

DEAR  sir: — 

I  dined  yesterday  with  the  old  Marquis  de 
Marbois.  I  fovind  myself  seated,  by  chance, 
between  Messrs.  Pichon  and  Adet,  who  made, 
including  our  host,  three  ex-ministers  of  France 
to  the  U.  States.  Jefferson's  letters  were 
mentioned,  and  both  M.  de  Marbois  and  M. 
Pichon,  who  were  intimate  with  Jefferson, 
expressed  a  desire  to  see  them.  I  could  not 
offer  to  lend  your  voltmies  without  your  per- 
mission, but  you  would  confer  a  favor  on  me 
by  granting  the  permission. 

The  Marquis  de  Marbois  is  President  of  the 
Court  of  Accounts  and  a  Peer.  He  is  eighty 
years  of  age,  and  of  great  personal  respecta- 
bility and  receives  once  a  week.  He  is,  at  all 
times,  very  kind  to  Americans,  having  married 
in  Philadelphia.  His  age,  official  rank,  and, 
above  all,  his  kind  feelings  towards  America 
render  him  a  proper  object  of  attention.  It  is 
quite  in  the  course  of  etiquette  that  you  should 
visit  him,  if  you  feel  disposed.    The  result 


PARIS,  1 83 1 

wotdd  be  an  invitation  to  dinner.  Cuvier, 
Villemain,  and  a  great  ma^iy  other  men  of 
similar  character,  are  found  at  his  table, 
besides  a  host  of  peers  and  deputies.  I  am 
rather  intimate,  as  you  may  judge,  having 
dined  there  three  times  in  six  weeks,  and  if 
you  will  give  me  leave  I  will  request  permis- 
sion to  call  on  him  with  you,  next  Thursday 

I  should  also  say  that  one  meets,  at  his  table, 
a  great  many  Frenchmen  well  disposed  to 
America,  and  that  occasions  offer  to  aid  in 
bringing  our  relations  in  better  train,  than 
they  are  at  present.  Let  me  know  your 

Yours  very  tnily 

J.  Fenimobe  Cooper. 

H.  Brevoort,  Esq. 

Yesterday  the  Marquis  styled  La  Fayette 
the  Patron  of  Americans  at  Paris,  and  himself 

381    , 

PARIS,  1 83 1 

the  vice  Patron.  This  was  said  in  pleasantry, 
but  it  shows  his  disposition  to  be  on  good 
terms  with  us.  His  son-in-law,  the  Due  de 
Plaisance  (the  son  of  Le  Brun)  lives  with  him. 


Fontainebleau,  April,  1832. 

MY  DEAR  father: — 

I  wrote  by  the  last  packet  to  mother — We 
are  still  here  to  avoid  the  cholera,  which  con- 
tinues to  prevail  at  Paris;  the  reports  of  the 
last  five  or  six  days  exhibit  a  sensible  decrease 
in  the  ntimber  of  deaths.  The  general  opinion 
here  amongst  the  wise  men  is  that  it  will 
reach  America;  if  it  does  so,  it  will  fall  most 
severely  upon  the  population  of  the  Southern 
states,  so  much  so,  as  will  in  all  probability 
put  an  end  to  their  insurrectionary  schemes, 
by  carrying  off  half  their  negroes. 

Margaret  writes  me  that  your  health  and 
your  spirits  are  good,  but  that  you  worry 
yourself  about  your  affairs  being  in  an  un- 
settled state  &  that  when  she  tells  you  to  spend 
your  money  in  comforts,  you  stop  her  by  say- 
ing that  you  are  over  head  and  ears  in  debt 
&  so  on. — ^AU  this  gives  me  pain,  for  you 

know,  my  dear  father,  that  I  cannot  feel 



happy  myself  whilst  I  hear  that  you  are 

yourself    discontented, — Now,    so   far    as    I 

know  on  the  subject  of  your  affairs,  you  owe 

but  two  debts,  I  mean  the  bond  to  the  heirs  of 

Coster  &  the  bond  to  me:  the  first  you  have 

the  means  of  discharging  whenever  you  Uke, 

if  indeed  you  have  not  already  done  so — The 

other,  you  may  also  discharge  in  three  days 

if  you  see  fit,  provided  you  should  think  it 

proper  to  agree  to  a  proposal  which  I  am  about 

to  make  to  you, — It  is  this — ^Ascertain  from 

M-  Renwick  &  M-  Gary  (for  your  bond  is 

left  in  their  hands)  the  amount  that  is  due 

from  you  to  me — and  then  convey  to  me  as 

many  of  your  lots  as  you  think  will  discharge 

it,  at  your  own  valuation,  and  I  pledge  myself 

to  be  satisfied  with  your  own  award,  he  it  what 

it  may.    The  only  condition  that  I  would  ask 

is  that  the  Lots  shall  be  in  a  body,  but  they 

may  be  taken  from  any  part  of  your  ground 

that  you  choose  to  select.     The  reason  of  my 

making  this  request  arises  from  a  sort  of  pro- 



ject  that  I  sometimes  entertain,  of  building  a 
larger  house  for  my  large  family,  if  it  should 
please  God  we  return  to  America  in  safety; 
&  I  might  probably  see  fit  to  do  it  upon  the 
ground  that  has  so  long  belonged  to  our  family, 
in  preference  to  any  other. — I  hope  you  fully 
imderstand  my  intentions  in  making  this  pro- 
posal to  you  &  that  my  motive  originates  in  a 
wish  to  remove  from  your  mind  any  source  of 
discontent  that  lies  within  my  own  power.  I 
hope  too,  that  you  understood  my  motives  in 
refusing  to  purchase  the  lots  you  offered  to  me 
before  I  left  America. — I  refused  to  take  them, 
because  I  felt  afraid  that  in.  the  event  of  their 
rising  in  value  (which  was  next  to  certain) 
that  I  might  be  accused  of  having  taken  an 
ungenerous  advantage  of  your  necessities, 
in  order  to  benefit  myself. — I  told  you  then, 
what  I  now  repeat,  that  so  far  as  you  &  I  were 
concerned,  all  might  be  adjusted  in  a  moment, 
without  any  fear  of  after  disputes  or  bitter  re- 
trospections ;  but  as  others  felt  they  had  rights 

VOL.  II. 25.  385 


&  claims  in  the  business,  I  felt  myself  too 
delicately  situated  to  yield  to  your  wishes. — 
I  am  glad  that  I  did  so. — In  case  you  see  fit 
to  settle  our  affairs  in  the  manner  now  pro- 
posed, I  request  you  to  give  the  deed  to  M! 
R  or  M-  Gary  &  request  that  it  may  be 
recorded. — 

I  have  been  much  gratified  to  learn  that  you 
are  pleased  with  Elias'  wife,  &  from  all  I  have 
heard,  she  seems  worthy  of  your  kind  feelings. 
As  to  Elias,  he  has  always  shown  himself  to 
be  possessed  of  dutiful  and  affectionate  feel- 
ings toward  all  of  his  family  that  are  worthy 
of  it.  He  is  a  man  of  principle  and  I  feel 
towards  him  the  warmest  attachment. — If 
he  has  not  shown  himself  active  &  enterprising, 
the  fault  is  as  much  owing  to  the  manner  in 
which  he  has  been  brought  up  as  to  his  nature 
— ^but  the  truth  is  he  has  never  yet  had  it  in 
his  power  to  act  upon  his  own  responsibility, 
and  give  proofs  of  what  he  is  capable  of  doing. 

I  have  written  to  him  &  given  my  opinion 



against  undertaking  a  large  fanning  estab- 
lishment for  the  present,  but  rather  to  under- 
take upon  a  smaller  scale  the  cultivation  of 
fruits  &  a  nursery,  which  would  be  fotind  a 
more  profitable  as  well  as  agreeable  scheme. 
If  the  grounds  that  you  possess  are  not  un- 
fitted for  such  a  purpose,  I  do  wish  you 
would  (tmtil  something  better  adapted  can 
be  procvired)  allow  him  to  cultivate  them 
in  such  a  manner  as  he  likes,  uncontrolled 
— The  rent  that  might  be  required  from 
him,  I  will  guarantee  shall  be  paid  to  you. 
— I  can  send  him  from  France  Grape  vines 
&  any  other  things  that  might  be  useful  if 

The  boys  were  well  and  happy  in  Switzer- 
land the  last  time  that  we  heard  from  them. 
The  little  girls  are  all. with  us. — ^With  mine  & 
Latira's  kindest  regards  to  you  all,  I  remain, 
my  dear  Father, 

ever  affectionately  your  son 

Henry  Brevoort,  Jr. 



N.  B. 

I  request  that  you  send  me  an  answer  to  this 
letter  as  soon  as  you  conveniently  can. — 
Elias  will  be  your  secretary. 


NEW  YORK,  SEPTEMBER  28*11  1833 

New  York,  Sept.  28'^  1833. 
I  enclose  you,  My  Deax  Sir,  the  letter  of  Sir 
Walter  Scott  which  some  ten  years  since  I 
rescued  from  a  heap  of  rubbish  in  my  Father's 
garret.     I  have  set  a  great  value  upon  it, 
not  Only  from  its  being  an  autograph  of  one  so 
illustrious,  but  that  it  bore  testimony  at  so 
early  a  day  of  the  talents  of  my  Uncle  Wash- 
ington.   As  I  cannot,  however,  dispute  your 
better  title  to  it,  I  send  it  to  you,  venturing 
at  the  same  time  to  express  a  hope  that  it  may 
at  a  future  day  return  to  some  one  of  our  name. 
I  am, 
My  Dear  Sir 

With  much  respect 

Very  truly  yours 

Pierre"  P.  Irving 

H.  Brevoort,  Jr.,  Esq. 


NEW  YORK,  OCTOBER  8«l  1833 
New  York,  Oct.  8'-^  1833. 

MY  DEAR  sir: — 

I  I  take  the  liberty  to  present  to  you  Captain 
Alfred  Mordecai,  of  our  army — the  number 
one,  of  his  year  at  West  Point.  His  amiable 
qualities,  no  less  than  his  high  professional 
distinction,  induce  me  to  ask  you  to  receive 
him  as  one  of  [our]  countrymen  the  most  en- 
titled to  consideration. 
i  Hoping  that  you  will  have  had  a  happy 
meeting  with  your  family, 

I  remain,  with  great  esteem, 
Yrs.  very  truly 

WiNFiELD  Scott. 

Henry  Brevoort,  Esq', 


PARIS,  MAY  23d  1834 

Paris  le  2j  mai,  1834. 
messieurs: — 

C'est  avec  le  sentiment  de  la  plus  respectu- 
euse  reconnaissance,  que  j'ai  regu  la  lettre  que 
vous  m'avez  fait  I'honneur  de  m'adresser, 
au  moment  ou  ma  famille  et  moi,  nous  venions 
de  perdre  le  p^re  venerable  et  tendrement 
aime,  que  le  ciel  nous  avoit  donn6. — 

Aprds  avoir  combl6  de  satisfaction  et  de 

gloire,  la  vieillesse  de  celui  qui  avait  eu  le  bon- 

hetir  de  leur  consacrer  ses  plus  jeunes  ann6es,  les 

citoyens  des  6tats-unis,  vont  pleurer  avec  nous 

sur  son  tombeau,  et  ces  larmes  seront  pour  sa 

memoire,   une  pr6cieuse  recompense,   de  sa 

fidelity  aux  convictions  qu'il  avoit  rapportees 

de  la  terre  classique  de  la  liberty. — Ces  larmes 

seront  avidemment  recueillies  par  ses  enfans, 

et   petitsenfans.     EUes    leior    donneront    du 

courage  potir  supporter  lettr  malheur,  de  la 

force  potur  marcher  d'tm  pas  ferme  et  assure, 

dans  la  route  qu'a  toujours  suivie,  celui  qui 

a  su  les  meriter. — 


PARIS,  MAY  23d  1834 

I  Messieiirs,  votre  sympathle  adoucit  notre 
affliction,  elle  r6pand  un  beatune  salutaire, 
sur  nos  coeurs  bris6s  par  la  douleur. — 

Recevez  rhommage  de  notre  respectueuse 
gratitude. — 

George  W.  Lafayette 
A  Monsietir  Henry  Brevoort, 

et  les  membres  du  Comity  Ara6ricain 

(Translation  of  Lafayette's  Letter) 

Paris,' May  2j-  1834. 

Gentlemen: — 

:    It  was  with  the  sentiment  of  most  respectful 

gratitude  that  I  received  the  letter  which  you 

did  us  the  honor  to  address  to  me,  just  after 

my  family  and  I  had  lost  the  venerable  and 

tenderly   loved   father   whom   Heaven   had 

granted  to  us. 

I    After  having  heaped  satisfaction  and  glory 

on  the  old  age  of  him  who  had  the  good 

fortune  to  consecrate  his  most  youthful  years 

to  them,  the  citizens  of  the  United   States 


PARIS,  MAY  23d  1834 

now  weep  with  us  over  his  tomb,  and  their 
tears  in  his  memory  will  be  a  precious  reward 
for  his  fidelity  to  the  convictions  which  he 
had  brought  from  the  classic  land  of  liberty. 
— These  tears  will  be  gladly  gathered  up  by 
his  children  and  grandchildren.  They  will 
give  them  courage  to  support  their  misfortune, 
strength  to  march  with  firm  and  assured  step 
along  the  road  that  was  ever  followed  by  him 
who  knew  how  to  deserve  these  tears. — 

Gentlemen,  your  sympathy  softens  our 
affliction  and  spreads  a  salutary  balm  on  our 
grief-shattered  hearts. — 

Accept  the  homage  of  our  respectful  grati- 

George  W.  Lafayette 

To  Mr.  Henry  Brevoort 

and    the    Members    of    the    American 


NEW  YORK,  SEPTEMBER  8!^  1836 

20  Broadway,  Sept.  8-  1836. 

Col?  Trumbull  presents  his  respects  to  M' 
Brevoort  &  begs  him  to  accept  an  Engraving 
of  Gen!  Washington,  done  from  a  pictxire 
painted  by  him,  many  years  since. 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  24th  1843 

New  York,  April  24-  1843. 
Henry  Brevoort,  Esq. 

DEAR  sir: — 

A  Committee  has  this  day  been  appointed 
by  the  Vestry  of  Grace  Church  authorized  to 
negotiate  for  a  plot  of  ground  for  the  ptirpose 
of  erecting  thereon  a  Church  for  that  Congre- 
gation. And  as  Chairman  of  that  Com:  I 
am  directed  to  enquire  from  you  the  price  you 
would  ask  for  125  feet  on  the  east  side  of  Broad- 
way between  ioth&  nth  Streets  by  140  feet 
in  depth  with  a  guaranty  that  the  Church  be 
held  harmless  from  any  assessments  that  the 
said  plot  might  be  subject  to,  in  case  of  the 
contemplated  opening  of  nth  Street  from 
Broadway  to  the  Bowery,  and  in  that  event 
giving  to  the  Vestry  the  priviledge  of  taking 
at  the  same  rate  the  square  foot  the  gore  on 
Broadway  to  i  ith  Street. 

The  Vestry  being  desirous  of  immediate 

purchase,  and  having  other  sites  in  view  I 


NEW  YORK,  APRIL  24«!  1843 

would  ask  an  answer  at  your  earliest  con- 

Your  Ob.  S5 

David  Austin, 



NEW  YORK,  APRIL  25^^  1843 

New  York,  April  25-  1843. 
David  Austin,  Esq. 
DEAR  sir: — 

In  reply  to  your  note  of  the  24th  ins*  I  beg 
to  say,  that  the  heirs  of  my  late  father  are  will- 
ing to  sell  to  the  Vestry  of  Grace  Church,  the 
plot  of  ground  on  the  east  side  of  Broad  Way 
between  10  &  11  Streets,  125  feet  front  in  said 
B'?  Way,  by  140  feet  in  depth — adjoining  the 
marble  yard  at  the  Comer  of  10  S*  &  B"?  Way 
for  the  sum  of  ^35000  &  they  (the  heirs)  will 
stipulate  that  nothing  in  the  shape  of  a  nui- 
sance shall  be  erected  upon  the  gore  of  land 
lying  north  of  the  above  plot  of  ground  &  the 
Comer  of  11  S-;  but  they  will  not  guaranty 
that  Grace  Church  shall  be  held  harmless  from 
any  assessment  that  the  said  plot  may  be 
subject  to  in  case  11  S-  should  hereafter  be 
opened  from  Broad  Way  to  the  Bowery. — 
I  remain 

Y^  Obt.  St. 

H,  Brevoort.